Taiwanese-based Singaporean activist and blogger Roy Ngerng Yi Ling wrote on his Facebook page yesterday (10 January) that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong singled out blogger Leong Sze Hian to sue him for civil defamation, for merely sharing an article on Facebook, and he should be penalised for this action.
Ngerng pointed out that there were almost 10,000 individuals who shared the article but only Leong was picked and sued. To top it up, Leong didn’t even write a caption to accompany his post when he shared the article on Facebook.
Leong is being sued by PM Lee for sharing what his lawyers referred as a “highly defamatory” article by Malaysian website The Coverage. The website accused PM Lee for helping former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak launder funds in the 1MDB scandal.
As such, Ngerng feels that this is clearly a targeted attack on a singular individual.
“If law should be applied fairly, the Prime Minister should have sued all the nearly 10,000 people who shared the article. However, only Leong was sued, as such Leong has been unfairly targeted,” he noted.
He added, “Leong did not write any caption where he shared the article, and the Prime Minister sued him based on the contents inside the article. If so, the Prime Minister should have sued the two originators of the article. Based on public knowledge, the Prime Minister did not, which clearly shows the Prime Minister has acted unfairly.”
By attacking a sole individual for just sharing an article, Ngerng opines that PM Lee should lose this case as the law should be fairly applied to all citizens of Singapore. He continued and said that the PM Lee “should be penalised for singling out an individual to be targeted”.
Besides Leong, PM Lee also sued Ngerng in 2014 for defamation after the latter defamed the Prime Minister in a post alleging misappropriation of money paid by Singaporeans to the Central Provident Fund (CPF).
In December 2015, the blogger was found guilty for the blogpost and the Supreme Court had ordered him to pay S$150, 000 in damages. Ngerng has since been making regular payments to PM Lee for the damages awarded by the court.