NFCorp executive chairman gets leave to appeal in defamation suit against Rafizi

by BERNAMA / pic by TMR FILE

NATIONAL Feedlot Corporation Sdn Bhd (NFCorp) executive chairman Datuk Seri Dr Mohamad Salleh Ismail (picture) has obtained leave to appeal in his defamation suit against PKR vice-president Mohd Rafizi Ramli.

The Federal Court three-man panel comprising Justices Datuk Abdul Rahman Sebli, Puan Sri Zaleha Yusof and Datuk Hasnah Mohammed Hashim allowed Mohamad Salleh’s application by consent of parties in the case.

Justice Abdul Rahman allowed four legal questions as agreed by the parties for determination by the Federal Court.

The questions include whether in a defamation action, a letter before action is a prerequisite to the statement of claim.

Lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, representing  Mohamad Salleh, informed the panel that after a discussion with Mohd Rafizi’s counsel, Ranjit Singh, both parties agreed on the four questions of law.

Mohamad Salleh sought leave to appeal against the Court of Appeal decision in May last year which ruled in favour of Mohd Rafizi.

The Court of Appeal had allowed Mohd Rafizi’s appeal to set aside a High Court order that he (Mohd Rafizi) pays RM200,000 in damages to Mohamad Salleh and his company.

The Court of Appeal three-man bench led by Justice Datuk Dr Hamid Sultan Abu Backer had also dismissed a cross-appeal brought by Mohamad Salleh on the quantum of damages.

Mohamad Salleh was also ordered by the appellate court to refund a total sum of RM300,000,  which included the RM200,000 in damages and RM100,000 costs which was paid by Mohd Rafizi to him (Mohamad Salleh).

In 2013, Mohamad Salleh and NFCorp sued Mohd Rafizi, claiming that he (Mohd Rafizi) had made a defamatory statement on March 7, 2012 at a media conference at the PKR Office on the purchase of KL Eco City properties which was published by Malaysiakini on the same day.

On Oct 31, 2016, the High Court in Kuala Lumpur ordered Mohd Rafizi to pay RM150,000 in damages to Mohamad Salleh and RM50,000 in damages to NFCorp after allowing their suit against him (Mohd Rafizi).

The High Court, however, dismissed Dr Mohamad Salleh’s suit against Malaysiakini.