Nik Aziz To Sue NST, Rahim Over ‘Father Of Kafir’ Tag

Published On May 19, 2012 |

KUALA LUMPUR — Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat will sue the New Straits Times, former police chief Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Noor and three others next week over the Umno-controlled newspaper’s May 8 report labelling the PAS spiritual leader as the “father of kafir (infidels).”

The party organ Harakah quoted Kelantan PAS’ legal and human rights bureau chief Hisham Fauzi as saying that the state’s Mentri Besar has prepared all the necessary documents.

“Next week we will file the suit… it will probably be done on Monday,” he said yesterday.

He added that the notice of intention to sue has been sent to the five, including NST journalists Rahmah Ghazali, Lim Poh Lean and Nik Imran Abdullah.

Earlier this week, PAS had given Rahim 24 hours to retract his statement and apologise to Nik Aziz over the report headlined “Nik Aziz is father of kafir.”

According to the page six report, Rahim was reacting to Nik Aziz’s defence of those who participated at the April 28 Bersih rally for electoral reforms in Kuala Lumpur as fulfilling their Islamic obligation.

But the former Inspector General of Police has since clarified in a letter to the paper that he had not uttered the words, but had only questioned PAS’s association with secularist DAP.

Rahmah, whose byline appeared on the story, also wrote on micro-blogging site denying she played any role in the “father of kafir” statement but no party has so far come forward with a formal apology.

Nik Aziz is demanding the respondents publish their apology on the front page of NST and on six other pages, as well as a full-page apology in either Berita Harian or Utusan Malaysia in addition to RM1 million in compensation.

NST has suffered widespread criticism over its post-Bersih coverage in which the English daily has highlighted violence by protestors and run articles questioning the credibility of those supporting the rally which saw chaotic scenes in the capital as police clashed with rally-goers.

Australian senator Nicholas Xenophon has also said he will sue the newspaper for its May 2 article falsely quoting him as saying Islam was a criminal organisation on the back of his comments supporting the rally which he had attended as an independent observer.