Friday, March 25, 2011

Court throws out ex-ISA detainees’ RM200m suit

Former ISA detainees M Manoharan and P Uthayakumar lose their bid to sue Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and five others.

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today dismissed a RM200-million suit brought by former Internal Security Act (ISA) detainees M Manoharan and P Uthayakumar against Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and five others.

Judicial Commissioner Harmindar Singh Dhaliwal allowed the application by Najib and the five others to strike out the suit after hearing submissions from Manoharan, who represented himself and Uthayakumar, and senior federal counsel Najib Zakaria and Azizan Md Arshad who appeared for Najib and the others.

The five others are former prime minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein, former inspector-general of police Musa Hassan, the Taiping detention centre superintendent and the government.

Azizan told reporters the judge allowed the application with RM5,000 costs.

When asked for the grounds on which the application was granted, Azizan said there was no issue to be tried in the suit filed by the two ISA detainees.
He said he had submitted that the claim and the damages sought by the plaintiff in the suit could not be sustained as the High Court had ruled in their habeas corpus application that their detention was lawful.

Manoharan said he would appeal against today’s outcome.

In the striking-out application, Najib and the five other defendants said the suit filed by Manoharan and Uthayakumar on Dec 9 last year was frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of the court process.
They said the suit was directly related to a case which had been disposed of by the High Court and Federal Court.

In their suit, Manoharan and Uthayakumar had sought RM100 million each in damages and an annual interest of 8% on the grounds that they had been wrongfully detained for 514 days from Dec 13, 2007, to May 9, 2009.