KUALA LUMPUR: Controversial government preacher Zamihan Mat Zin has filed a RM2 million defamation suit against Perlis mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin for calling him an “extremist”.
In his lawsuit, Zamihan, who is attached with the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim), claimed that Asri had made defamatory statements against him on Oct 14, 2018 and Feb 9, 2019.
The first were remarks by Asri published in Utusan Malaysia in which the mufti accused Zamihan of having “extreme views and even questioning the Johor sultan”, according to the statement of claim filed by Zamihan’s lawyer.
Zamihan, who ran programmes by Putrajaya to rehabilitate terrorism suspects, also said that on Feb 9, Asri at a forum in Petaling Jaya had questioned the government for hiring an “extreme” religious officer.
“His statements are false and implied that I am not a qualified person on issues related to Islam.
“He was also trying to imply I am a terrorist,” Zamihan said, adding that Asri’s remarks were meant to insult him.
Zamihan is seeking RM2 million and other damages, as well as an apology from Asri.
Zamihan courted controversy in 2017 over remarks critical of the Johor sultan. He was subsequently investigated for sedition.