KUALA LUMPUR – The High Court here today granted Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob (picture) an ad-interim injunction against the owner of Agenda Daily Media Enterprise in his defamation suit over an article published last January.
Lawyer Joshua Tan, representing Ismail Sabri, said Judicial Commissioner Evrol Mariette Peters allowed the injunction to be enforced until April 27 as an earlier ex-parte injunction will expire on March 11.
“The court has granted the ad-interim injunction against Muhamad Izwan Mohd Zubit (the owner) to maintain status quo pending the disposal of the inter-parte injunction application on April 27,” the lawyer told media after the proceedings held virtually today.
He said the court also allowed the defendant’s request for more time to file an affidavit in reply to the plaintiff’s injunction application.
On Feb 18, Ismail Sabri obtained an interim injunction order from the High Court for the defendant to remove the posting and from making any statements in relation to him.
Ismail Sabri, in the defamation suit which he filed in his personal capacity, alleged that on Jan 30, Agenda Daily had published the article on its website which contained various ill-intentioned, defamatory and untrue statements regarding the plaintiff.
He said that the article, among others, implied that he was desperate to continue being the prime minister in whatever way and was even willing to beg certain political parties not to withdraw their support for him besides inferring that he was concerned about becoming the prime minister with the shortest tenure in Malaysian history.
“The article also implied that I was not loyal to UMNO and was only interested to continue being prime minister regardless of UMNO’s interests and more concerned about my position as prime minister and not the country’s interests,” he said in his statement of claim.
As a result of the publication of the article, Ismail Sabri said his reputation as UMNO member and as prime minister had been tarnished.
“The publication also caused me emotional turmoil and the defamatory statements contained in the article can also have a negative effect on my political career,” he said.
According to Ismail Sabri, although his lawyer had sent a letter of demand dated Feb 3 asking the defendant to delete the article and to apologise, nothing has been done until today.
As such, Ismail Sabri sought an injunction order for the defendant to delete the defamatory article on all websites and social media operated by the defendant and an injunction order to prevent the defendant or his agent from issuing similar defamatory statements against the plaintiff.