TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 2017
The Putrajaya Court of Appeal today unanimously dismissed Zamihan Mat Zin’s appeal against the decision of the Shah Alam High Court which found him liable in uttering defamatory statement against Syria Care with costs of RM10,000.00.
A three member bench presided by YA Dato’ Rohana Bin Yusof upheld the decision of the Shah Alam High Court on 21 April 2017 which allowing Syria Care’s claim for defamation against Zamihan Mat Zin. During the proceedings, an amendment was made to allow the chairman Syria Care to act as the Plaintiff (who is suing as a public officer of Syria Care).
The defamation suit was filed by Syria Care, through its solicitor, Messrs Shukor & Associates in the Shah Alam High Court against Zamihan Mat Zin and Star Media Group Berhad based on a report published by the Star Online quoted Zamihan Mat Zin entitled ” Senseless violence jihad puts Malaysia as a hub, says Home Ministry officer “(The report have been removed by the Star Online) which links Syria Care directly as a Syiah groups in Malaysia that must be monitored by the government.
The Appellate court also agreed with the finding of fact by the High Court that Zamihan Mat Zin has uttered the word Syria Care in his statement which directly link Syria Care as a Syiah group that hide behind non-governmental organizations which have different meaning and objective that must be monitored by the government.
The Shah Alam High Court further found, inter alia, that Zamihan Mat Zin to be unreliable witness as his answer were dithering and contradictory as against his own pleading.
On 21 April 2017, the Shah Alam High Court judge, Datuk Wan Ahmad Farid Bin Wan Salleh has delivered his judgment of this case as follows:
- That Zamihan Mat Zin (First Defendant) failed in his defence in this action and the High Court found him liable against the Plaintiff and to pay costs of RM30,000.00 to the Plaintiff. An assessment of damages will be heard on a later date;
- That a restraining order in the form of an permanent injunction restraining Zamihan Mat Zin from speaking, or further publishing, or causing or permitting to be published the impugned statements or any other words to the same or any similar effect in any manner whatsoever in the future;
- That Zamihan Mat Zin to publish an unconditional apology to the Plaintiff wherein the apology must be published in the Star Online;
- That the claims against Star Media Group Berhad (Second Defendant) was dismissed with no order as to costs;
- That the court found the impugned statement was false and a restraining order in the form of an permanent injunction restraining the Star Media Group Berhad, servants or agents or otherwise from speaking, or further publishing, or causing or permitting to be published the impugned statements or any other words to the same or any similar effect in any manner whatsoever in the future;
- That the Star Media Group Berhad to publish an unconditional apology to the Plaintiff wherein the apology must be published in the Star Online.
The Star Media Group Berhad has published unconditional apology on 17 May 2017.