Guan Eng questions inaction on defamation of son six years ago

By Opalyn Mok
A police officer is seen recording the statement of Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng at his office in Komtar this morning. — Picture by Opalyn Mok

GEORGE TOWN, March 2 — Police officers visited Lim Guan Eng today to ask the Penang chief minister if he wanted to proceed with the case on the alleged defamation of his son, six years after police reports were lodged.

Two police officers met Lim in the presence of his special legal officer, Raja Syarafina Raja Shuib, at about 9.30am at his office in Komtar today for about 20 minutes.

According to the Penang lawmaker, the police only asked him whether he wanted to proceed with the case and whether he was willing to appear in court.

"This is the third time they are taking my statement again on this and this time, they came to ask me if I want to proceed with the case and if I want to appear in court," Lim told reporters after the policemen left.

He demanded to know why after six years, the police came to ask him whether he wants to proceed with the case.

"These are evil lies against my son who was under 16 at that time. He was not even 16 yet and because of the false news at that time, he didn't want to go to school and I was so worried that he would do silly things then. Of course I want to proceed with the case, of course I am willing to go to court," he said.

Back in 2011, some pro-Umno blogs posted allegations that Lim's teenage son had sexually assaulted a schoolmate and claimed that Lim had paid the girl and her family RM200,000 to cover up the case.

Lim said the girl that the blogs claimed was the victim was not even in Penang and have never met him or his son.

"They used a picture of a girl taken from the internet. The girl, who is an international chess player, has said she has never been to Penang or met me or my son," he said.

Lim had lodged a police report against the blogs for publishing those false allegations against his son at that time.

"It has been six years and no actions were taken so I want to ask why the AG is taking such a lackadaisical attitude towards this," he asked.

He pointed out that those who had insulted the Prime Minister on social media were immediately arrested and charged in court, which was a big contrast to the way this case was handled.

"I don't understand the attitude taken by AG Chambers, it is very unprofessional and I'm very disappointed. This happened six years ago and now they come to ask me if I want to go ahead with the case. I am not blaming the police, they are only taking instructions from the AG," he said, referring to the Attorney-General.

He said he could not file a defamation suit against the person behind the blog, whom he did not name, because the person was bankrupt and could not be sued.

"They should charge him for criminal defamation," he said.