‘Weird and contradictory’ for Anwar to drop suit, says lawyer Haniff

Lawyer Haniff Khatri Abdulla (left) says the decision by PKR president Anwar Ibrahim to drop the suit against his client is contradictory to earlier statements issued on the matter.

GEORGE TOWN: Lawyer Haniff Khatri Abdulla today said it was surprising that Anwar Ibrahim had decided not to sue his client, Muhammed Yusoff Rawther, over the latter’s claim of sexual assault when the PKR president and his lawyer had been adamant to do so.

Haniff said the decision made by Anwar’s lawyer Ramkarpal Singh was also “contradictory” with earlier statements that implied Anwar was going to sue Yusoff for slander despite knowing that the solicitor-general (SG) was not pursuing a police complaint on the matter.

Today, Ramkarpal said Anwar would not be suing his former research assistant as the SG had already decided not to act on the latter’s complaint due to “contradiction of material facts” in the case.

Haniff said Ramkarpal’s statement today contradicted what he had said on Jan 17 when he insisted that Anwar would file a suit “next week”.

“But until now we have not received any notice of the suit, contrary to what was said earlier. I think anyone can tell that this is a contradictory statement. It is very weird and contradictory.

“What is weirder is for Ramkarpal to purportedly state that the SG’s decision has cleared the good name of Anwar. This is completely wrong.

“This is because the decision to pursue or not to pursue (a case) by the AGC does not involve clearing anyone’s name. The only authority which can clear anyone’s name is the court of law.

“We were all told that Anwar would maintain the action on my client as his allegations were supposedly frivolous and scurrilous. I have also requested them not to retract their suit.

“I will discuss with my client accordingly on this latest development,” he told FMT.

Yusoff had lodged a police report against Anwar, resulting in a probe under Section 354 of the Penal Code, which deals with using criminal force to outrage a person’s modesty.

The Port Dickson MP has rejected the allegations.

In deciding not to pursue criminal charges against Anwar, SG Engku Nor Faizah Engku Atek, on behalf of Attorney-General Tommy Thomas who recused himself from the case, said there were “contradictions of material facts” in Yusoff’s claims.

“We also found there is insufficient evidence to prosecute on the reports lodged, based on the evidence available in the investigation papers,” she said.