Kit Siang to Sue Ex-Top Cop Hanif Omar over ‘Dividing Malaysia’ Claim

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Police urged to investigate Hanif for sedition over his statement allegedly intended to pit the Malays and Chinese against each other.

DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang has instructed his lawyer Ramkarpal Singh to initiate a defamation lawsuit against Tun Hanif Omar over the former inspector-general of police’s claim that he had pushed for the division of Peninsular Malaysia into two after the 1969 race riots.

Ramkarpal said he will be issuing a letter of demand in accordance to Lim’s instructions as Hanif has not responded to Lim’s demand for an explanation by a two-day deadline, which expired at 12.30pm today.

“In the circumstances, I will take the necessary steps to initiate such legal proceedings by issuing a letter of demand to Hanif which will be served on him after the holidays on Wednesday (12.9.2018) for him to, inter alia, apologise and retract his said statement and further, to propose a sum in damages to be agreed upon by parties within fourteen (14) days from the date of the said letter of demand failing which, legal proceedings will be commenced against him for such defamatory comments.

“I also urge the police to investigate Hanif for sedition as there can be no doubt that his said statement has a tendency to pit one race against another, namely the Malays against the Chinese,” Ramkarpal, who is the DAP national legal bureau chairman, said in a statement.

Lim had threatened legal action against Hanif two days ago after the ex-top policeman was reported telling a forum in Universiti Teknologi Mara on Thursday that the DAP veteran had advocated for Malays to get the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia and for the west coast to go to the Chinese after the controversial 1969 general election.

Yusof Mat Isa

He added that this was the reason he detained Lim under the Internal Security Act (ISA) that same month.

Lim dismissed the “preposterous allegations”, labelling them “cock-and-bull stories about Hanif’s past police career” which were “replete with errors”.

Yesterday, Lim revealed that in the seven grounds of his detention under the Internal Security Act in 1969, no reference was made to any proposal to divide Peninsular Malaysia into the east coast for Malays and the west coast for Chinese.

In a media statement, Lim said: “This is the first time I have heard that he was responsible for my first detention under the ISA.”

Lim Huey Teng/Malaysiakini

“In the first place, he was not the IGP when I was detained for the first time under the ISA on May 18, 1969.

“Hanif served as IGP from 1974 to 1994, after I was released from ISA detention on Oct 1, 1970,” he added.

He lamented that he had been “the most demonised political leader in the past half a century”.

“I was accused of being a communist; of being responsible for the May 13, 1969 riots; of leading street demonstrations in Kuala Lumpur shouting anti-Malay and anti-Islam slogans although I was never in Kuala Lumpur after the May 10, 1969 general election.

“I was painted as a devil, a puaka, even jembalang; accused of being anti-Malay and anti-Islam; called a stooge of foreign powers.

Firdaus Latif

“I was accused of dominating Pakatan Harapan (PH) and making other leaders like Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Anwar Ibrahim, Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Muhyiddin Yassin, Mohamed Azmin Ali and Mohamad Sabu into my stooges and puppets; and of wanting to be prime minister if PH could win the 14th general election.

“But all these lies, falsehoods and demonisation pale into insignificance compared with Hanif’s cock-and-bull story that I advocated after the May 1969 general election for Peninsular Malaysia to be split into two, east coast for the Malays and the west coast for the Chinese.”

Ramkarpal today added that Hanif’s further claim that he had put Lim behind bars, as a result, was a clear insinuation on his part that Lim was responsible for such a demand.

It was, he argued, highly defamatory and also possibly seditious.

“I wish to reiterate Lim’s instructions that Hanif’s allegations are utterly baseless and were made with the sole intention of discrediting Lim which has subjected him to unwarranted public odium,” Ramkarpal said in a statement.

Earlier report: Sept 6, Ex-IGP Threw Kit Siang into Jail to Keep Racial Harmony