Richard Wee vs Michael Kong final pre-trial case management date fixed

Court. — file pic

By Dorcas Ting

KUCHING, Jan 29: The High Court here fixed February 4 for the final pre-trial case management for the suit filed by Sarawak Federation of Chinese Associations president Datuk Richard Wee against Michael Kong, special assistant to Sarawak DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen, over an alleged defamatory statement on Kong’s social media page.

Trial dates are expected to be fixed after the pre-trial case management on February 4.

Kong posted an allegedly defamatory statement on his Facebook page entitled “Before Dato Richard Wee purports to speak on behalf of the Chinese community in support of the GPS, he should declare his personal and business interest with the current GPS government particularly Parti Pesaka Bumiputra Bersatu (PBB)”, which was authored and published by Kong on July 21, 2020.

Wee through his counsel, Shankar Ram Asnanai is applying to the Court for general damages, aggravated damages, exemplary damages for libel and malicious falsehood; and the injunction to restrain the defendant from publishing, causing to be published, circulating and distributing the said post.

Shankar also applied for an order directing the defendant to publish an apology in a manner approved by the plaintiff or by the Court and for the same to be published once in one English language newspaper and one Chinese language newspaper, with a circulation in Sarawak, of the plaintiff’s choice at the defendant’s cost and once on the Facebook Account; costs on a solicitor-client basis or costs.

Wee had earlier told a local daily that it is likely that more urban and Chinese voters in Sarawak would support Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) in the upcoming Sarawak election due to the commitment shown by the coalition to fight for Sarawak’s rights.

In response, Kong released a statement that Wee should declare his personal and business interests with the current GPS Government particularly PBB.

Kong stated that Wee has been a business partner of PBB deputy secretary-general Datuk Ibrahim Baki. Therefore it is obvious that Datuk Richard Wee is closely connected to PBB through his business connection. — DayakDaily