Bersih 2.0 files defamation suit against NST

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KUALA LUMPUR: The steering committee members of Bersih 2.0 have filed a defamation suit against New Straits Times Press (Malaysia) Berhad (NSTP) and the author of an article titled "Plot to destabilise govt".

The 15 members of Bersih steering committee is represented by lawyer Daniel Albert.

The plaintiffs include Datuk S. Ambiga, Abdul Samad bin Mohamed Said, Andrew Khoo Chin Hock, Arul Prakkash Sinnappan and Ahmad Farouk Musa.

"We have studied the article very carefully and it basically makes a lot of false accusations about Bersih and the nature of its activities," said Andrew Khoo, who is the co-chairman of Bar Council Human Rights Committee.

The Bersih steering committee has written to NSTP to ask them for a retraction of those allegations, but there has been no response from NSTP.

The letter to NSTP was written on Oct 2 and Oct 3 last year.

"So we feel to set the record straight we have no choice but to file a lawsuit seeking injunction for defamation," said Khoo at the Jalan Duta Court Complex.

"We are looking for an apology, correction and damages," he added.

The plaintiff has not set an amount to the damages they are claiming saying that it is up to the court to decide.

"As far as we are concerned they did not contact us to even fact check the contents of the article," said Daniel Albert, lawyer for Bersih 2.0 steering committee.

The alleged defamatory article that was published on the front page of NST on Sept 21, 2012, accused that several non-governmental organisations, including Bersih, has received funds from National Endowment for Democracy with the intention of destabilising the government.

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