Court orders blogger to say if he is Papagomo in Guan Eng defamation suit

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The High Court has ordered blogger Wan Muhammad Azri Wan Deris to answer three questions in response to a defamation suit filed by DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and his son, Clint Lim, two years ago.

Lawyer K Simon Murali, representing the Lims, said judge Hayatul Akmal Abdul Aziz directed Wan Muhammad to answer the questions within 14 days.

Murali, who was assisted by Kok Yuen Lin, said the Lims were also granted RM3,000 in costs when the judge made the order after an online hearing today.

Logen Abdullah and Nurfazilah Jaafar represented Wan Muhammad.

Last year, the court granted time to Wan Muhammad to explain that he was not the blogger known as Papagomo in the defamation suit.

The duo alleged that Wan Muhammad spread false accusations that Clint had been detained while trying to smuggle RM2 million in cash into Singapore without declaring the money.

The incident stemmed from a Chinese vernacular newspaper report in March 2020. The newspaper subsequently published a retraction and an apology.

The Lims had earlier posed written questions to Wan Muhammad, who had claimed he was not Papagomo in his defence. However, he was evasive over the first three questions but answered the following five.

This led the Lims to get a court order today to compel Wan Muhammad to answer the three questions in a “yes” or “no” manner.

Murali said these questions were posed as the defendant had relied on the defence of justification (truth) and fair comment in response to the suit.

In court documents, Wan Muhammad denied the plaintiff’s statement of claim which referred to him as “Papagomo” and the publication of the defamatory article in a Facebook account.