KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today ordered Wan Muhammad Azri Wan Deris (pix), better known as “Papagomo”, to enter an appearance in the lawsuit filed by Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil within 14 days from today.
Fahmi, who is Lembah Pantai Member of Parliament, filed the suit against the blogger and two others on Sept 5 over an allegation that he gave a political speech at a mosque in Rawang, Selangor.
Lawyer Asheeq Ali Sethi Alivi, representing Fahmi, said the order for the blogger to enter his appearance was issued by Deputy Registrar Aisyaf Falina Abdullah during the case management which was conducted online today.
Wan Muhammad Azri was given until Dec 5 to do so, he said, adding that last Nov 6, the court ordered the summons client to be served to Wan Muhammad Azri through a substituted service notification in the newspaper as their attempts to serve the summons to the blogger had been futile.
“The notice was published in The Star newspaper today,“ said the lawyer when contacted.
He said the court set Dec 8 for case management for the plaintiff to inform the court whether the defendant has entered his appearance or otherwise.
Meanwhile, Fahmi in his Facebook post today said his lawyer has been trying to contact Wan Muhammad Azri for the past few months.
“This is related to the slanderous statement made by the individual (Wan Muhammad Azri) against me before the State Election last August,“ he said.
In addition to Wan Muhammad Azri, Fahmi also named independent speaker Ahmad Dusuki Abd Rani and the owner of the Facebook account “N13 Kuang”, Mohd Fauzan Madzlan as defendants in the lawsuit.
Based on the statement of claim, Fahmi stated that three defendants had published defamatory words by accusing him of abusing a place of worship, which is a mosque, to campaign for an election and had acted contrary to the orders of His Majesty the Sultan of Selangor.
Fahmi claimed that the defamatory words were posted on Wan Muhammad Azri’s Tik Tok and Facebook accounts on Aug 1, while on Mohd Fauzan’s Facebook account and Ahmad Dusuki’s Facebook and Instagram accounts on July 31
According to Fahmi, the slanderous statements were baseless and the Selangor Islamic Religious Council had confirmed that he did not give any political speech as accused by the defendants.
He also claimed that the defamatory statements were made with the aim of defaming his good name in order to gain cheap publicity or create a sensation in the national political arena, as well as to tarnish his reputation as a member of parliament and a Cabinet Minister.
As such, he is seeking general damages, aggravated or exemplary damages, and an injunction to prevent all the defendants from repeating or causing the re-publication of the defamatory statements. -Bernama