Court to record settlement over Anwar's defamation suit on Wednesday


KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today fixed Wednesday, Aug 29, for Sistem Televisyen Malaysia Bhd (TV3) and former Barisan Nasional (BN) Permatang Pauh candidate in the 13th general election Datuk Dr Mazlan Ismail to return to court to record their settlement over a defamation lawsuit filed against them, and another, by PKR founder Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. Mazlan’s lawyer, Datuk Hasnal Rezua Merican​​​​​,​ when approached by reporters after the parties involved met judicial commissioner Datin Faizah Jamaludin in chambers, said his client and TV3 had agreed to record a consent judgment next Wednesday. “The settlement only involves Dr Mazlan and TV3, not (the other defendant) Utusan Melayu (M) Berhad. They (Dr Mazlan and TV3) have agreed to retract the (allegedly defamatory) article, offer an apology and (pay the) cost, but the draft of the retraction and apology has yet to be prepared,” he said. The lawyer said Mazlan was currently performing haj in Makkah and would only return on Sept 19. “As such, the court set Sept 28 for my client to openly apologise (to Anwar) in court,” he said. Meanwhile, lawyer Azhar Arman Ali, who was representing Utusan Melayu, said he would leave it to his client to decide on the matter.

“It is up to my client to decide. I’m just waiting for their instruction, but I have indicated to the judge that there is a possibility for a settlement,” he said. Anwar, who was present in court today, filed the suit on Oct 15, 2015, claiming that the three defendants had implicated him of bribing judges and prosecutors. He claimed that Mazlan had called for a media conference during which the alleged defamatory words were uttered and then published by TV3 on its Buletin Utama at 8pm on Aug 2, 2013, and Utusan Melayu in its Utusan Malaysia newspaper on Aug 3, 2013. He claimed that Mazlan had made a slanderous and malicious statement against him at a media conference, which could be taken to mean that he was a person without ethics, was corrupt, dishonest and immoral. Anwar is seeking general, aggravated and exemplary damages and an injunction to stop the defendant from repeating or re-publishing the defamatory words. — BERNAMA © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd