KUCHING: The hearing of a defamation suit filed by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas continued yesterday, with five witnesses coming forward to testify for the plaintiff.
The five witnesses, subpoenaed by the plaintiff’s counsels Sim Hui Chuang and Alex Lim Lip Sze, included three from the media fraternity.
They responded to straightforward questions, including whether they were a member of a WhatsApp chat group ‘PKR Sarawak State Media’.
Uggah is suing Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Sarawak information chief Vernon Kedit, who allegedly called the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) heavyweight a ‘liar’ and a ‘traitor’.
The trial hearing is scheduled to run until June 19.
It is learnt that the defendant’s counsels Simon Siah and Desmond Kho have subpoenaed two witnesses to give their testimonies.
Both Uggah and Vernon appeared in the courthouse for the hearing.
Uggah, who is Bukit Sabah assemblyman, filed the suit with the Court on Aug 8 last year.
In April this year, Uggah told the High Court that he was a victim of defamation as a
result of slander by Vernon, adding that he had been heavily criticised by others but ‘none had defamed him like Vernon had’.
Vernon reportedly used those defamatory words against Uggah when commenting on the alleged imperfection of the amended Sarawak Land Code, particularly on the mechanism(s) to convert Native Customary Rights (NCR) land to Native Territorial Domain (NTD).