The High Court here today set Oct 26 to hear an application by Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor for a stay of the proceeding of their suit against PKR vice-president Mohd Rafizi Ramli and another person over the issue on oil subsidy.
Deputy Registrar Nurul Ain Hamzah set the date in Chambers in the presence of Nik Alia Nik Hanafi, representing Najib and Rosmah, while Mohd Rafizi was represented by Ng Siau Sun.
Another defendant, Media Rakyat portal owner Chan Chee Kong, was represented by lawyer Joanne Leong.
Leong, when met by reporters, said the prime minister and his wife had applied to stay proceeding of the suit pending the disposal of their appeal against a High Court decision at the Court of Appeal on Nov 28.
Najib and Rosmah are appealing against High Court judge Noraini Abdul Rahman’s decision on April 15 this year in dismissing their application to remove several paragraphs in the defence statement by the two defendants.
They had applied to remove the defence of fair comment by the two defendants on grounds that the words uttered were a statement of facts and not of a fair comment.
The couple filed the suit on April 16, last year, claiming that Mohd Rafizi had made a disparaging statement against them at a forum on oil subsidy in Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, on Nov 22, 2014.
They alleged that Mohd Rafizi’s speech was recorded by Media Rakyat and uploaded by Chan or his assistant on YouTube and the portal.
Najib and Rosmah further alleged that Chan had also shared the recording on Media Rakyat’s Facebook account which could be freely accessed by Internet users worldwide.
They said Chan failed to practise responsible journalism by not verifying or investigating the authenticity of the accusations in the statement before posting them.
Najib and Rosmah are seeking, among others, general, aggravated and exemplary damages and an order for Mohd Rafizi and Chan to make a public apology to be published in newspapers and magazines.