Saturday, September 5, 2015

Court Directive For Pm To File Defence Statement Is Accepted Practice

There is nothing unusual or obscure about a high court directive for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to file his statement of defence in a civil suit as it has been an accepted practice all along.

His lawyer, Datuk Mohd Hafarizam Harun said in any civil suit, the defendants had the statutory right to respond or reply to a suit.

Yesterday, the high court instructed Najib and three others to file their statement of defence in relation to a suit by the opposition for alleged overspending in the 13th General Election campaign.
The court instructed Najib to file his statement of defence on or by Oct 1.

"With respect to the directives given yesterday by the Kuala Lumpur High Court, among others, for Datuk Seri Najib to file his defence on or by Oct 1 2015, it is to be stressed here that it is not a finding of prima facie case of charge and thus, Datuk Seri Najib has to enter or call upon to put his defence.
"That is only applicable in a criminal case, which is not the case here," Mohd Hafarizam said in a statement.

"There is nothing unusual or obscure about this directive since it has been an accepted practice all this while."

He noted that the instruction did not prohibit Najib and three others to file any interlocutory applications such as an application to strike out the suit on frivolous, scandalous and vexatious grounds.
Mohd Hafarizam said the defendants informed the court yesterday that they intended to do so in the near future.

He said the court fixed Oct 9 for parties to brief what applications had been filed and for further directives to be given.

On Aug 12, PKR filed the suit against Najib for alleged violations of election laws in the general election.
The plaintiffs in the suit are de facto PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who is serving a jail sentence for a sodomy conviction, Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar, Batu MP Tian Chua, former PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail and New Hope Movement (GHB) member Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad.

The defendants are Najib, Barisan Nasional secretary-general Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, state investment firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and the Election Commission.

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