Sharifah Aini withdraws defamation suit against Utusan Melayu

KUALA LUMPUR: Veteran singer Datuk Sharifah Aini Syed Jaafar has withdrawn a defamation suit against Utusan Melayu (Malaysia) Berhad filed since five years ago.High Court judge Datuk Balia Yusof Wahi in chambers yesterday recorded Sharifah Aini’s application to withdraw the suit against the paper, its then editor-in-chief Datuk Khalid Mohamad and reporter Ku Seman Ku Hussain. The case was set for mention yesterday.

Sharifah Aini, who was represented by lawyer Shamsul Bahrain Ibrahim, was not present in court.

Lawyer Foo Siew June, who represented all the three defendants told the media that Sharifah Aini (the plaintiff), withdrew the suit without any order, costs and without freedom to file it again. Foo said Sharifah Aini had filed the stop action on the summon on Dec 4.

On Nov 25, both the plaintiff and defendants agreed to settle the matter out of court.

Sharifah Aini had on April 27, 2004, filed the suit against Utusan, the then group editor-in-chief Datuk Khalid Mohamad and entertainment reporter Ku Seman Ku Hussain over an article in Mingguan Malaysia dated March 31, 2004.

The singer claimed that the defendants had falsely and maliciously published in the newspaper’s ‘Cubit Manja’ section an article titled ‘SMS dan umang-umang’ which defamed her and tarnished her reputation.

She asked the court to order the defendants to pay her general, punitive and exemplary damages for libel and an injunction to restrain the defendants from writing or publishing similar statements about her.

In their statement of defence filed on June 18, 2004, the three defendants denied that the article was intended to defame the plaintiff but was a fair comment on a matter of public interest and on her actions and attitude as an artiste. — Bernama

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