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Guan Eng sues Muhyiddin over charity tax exemption

The former finance minister filed the defamation suit at the Kuala Lumpur High Court today.

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Former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin and former finance minister Lim Guan Eng.
Former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin and former finance minister Lim Guan Eng.

Bagan MP Lim Guan Eng filed a lawsuit today against former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin for allegedly issuing defamatory statements over the cancellation of Yayasan Albukhary's tax exemption.

Lim, 62, filed the defamation suit through Messrs Guok Partnership at the Kuala Lumpur High Court, naming Perikatan Nasional chairman Muhyiddin, 75, as the sole defendant.

In his statement of claim, the former finance minister said Muhyiddin had issued three defamatory statements involving him over the issue on March 9, 11 and 12, posted on the defendant's Facebook, which were published on the same day by several newspapers and news portals.

According to Lim, the remarks were deliberately made after Muhyiddin was detained by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) on March 9 as he knew that the media and press attention was focused on him.

The DAP chairman claimed the comments gave the impression that he was racist, anti-Malay and anti-Islam and had deliberately sabotaged Yayasan Albukhary for refusing to allow tax exemptions for the foundation when he was the finance minister from 2018 to 2020.

The former Penang chief minister also claimed the statements meant that he had abused his position and power by authorising or instructing the Inland Revenue Board to impose taxes and penalties on charitable foundations when they should not be taxed.

Lim demanded that Muhyiddin apologise, retract the statements, post an apology on his Facebook and Twitter accounts and publish it in several newspapers and news portals within seven days of the judgment date.

He is also seeking general, aggravated and punitive damages to be determined by the court and an injunction to prevent Muhyiddin or his agents from issuing or republishing the statements or similar remarks.

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