KUALA LUMPUR: Former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad has filed a defamation suit worth RM150 million against Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Dr. Mahathir is seeking RM100 million in exemplary damages and RM50 million in general damages.
The suit was filed through the Law Practice of Rafique at the Shah Alam High Court with Anwar Ibrahim as the sole defendant.
The NST in its report said Dr. Mahathir alleged Anwar Ibrahim had defamed him by accusing him of being racist and enriching himself and his family members during his 22-year tenure as prime minister.
Dr. Mahathir in his allegation said Anwar had made the impugned statement in his speech during PKR’s special national congress held at the Melawati Stadium in Shah Alam on March 18, 2023.
According to Dr. Mahathir, Anwar in his speech at the special congress had referred to someone “who in the past had been in power for 22 years and an additional 22 months” as taking advantage of his position to enrich himself and his family.
During the speech, Anwar also said this person had complained about the Malays losing everything when he was no longer in power. Anwar did not specify any name at the special party congress.
Dr. Mahathir said he has never been accused or convicted for any wrongdoing that involves abuse of power or misuse of funds either during or after serving as prime minister.
In his statement of claims, Dr. Mahathir said: “This fact is also known to the public including the defendant, which clearly aims to discredit the plaintiff’s name for no apparent reason.
“The plaintiff’s image and reputation as a statesman or former prime minister have been tarnished among the general public as long as the defendant has not issued an apology.
“The sense of shame towards the plaintiff and his children or family members is caused by the defendant’s statement and hinders the support or trust towards the plaintiff in terms of business opportunities and politics.
“The defendant is the current prime minister and it is important to ensure that every statement he made was based on facts and not just rumors or hearsay from the media.
“All of the plaintiff’s income is audited to ensure that there is no deceit in the payment of taxes or the source of income.
“The defendant’s statement is clearly baseless,” Dr. Mahathir claimed.
The former prime minister also demanded Anwar issue a written apology and hold a special press conference to apologize for making such a statement.
High Court Judicial Commissioner Jamhirah Ali has fixed May 31 for case management. – Malaysia World News