THIS year’s festival of light can be the most significant and memorable to former DAP stalwart Prof Ramasamy Palanisamy as the “Solidarity with Prof Ramasamy” crowdfunding campaign which started exactly a week ago has reached its tail-end with the RM1.52 mil target hit anytime soon today.
“The crowdfunding that started on Nov 2 is reaching the target anytime of the day. Once the amount of RM1.52 mil is reached, the collection exercise will cease,” exclaimed the former Penang chief minister II in his latest Facebook post.
“Our objective is meant to address the High Court imposed penalty of the above said amount.”
For the uninitiated, the Kuala Lumpur High Court had on Nov 2 ordered the former Penang chief minister II to pay controversial Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik RM1.52 mil over defamatory remarks that he (Ramasamy) had made with full settlement within 30 days (lest a 5% daily interest will be imposed from the day of judgement, ie Nov 2).
“Chances are that we will call for a media conference tomorrow (Nov 10) to officially announce the collection of the fund. One this is done, the fund will be handed over to my lawyers in Penang,” explained the former Perai state assemblyman.
“Deepavali is also only a few days of. I take the opportunity to wish a Happy and Prosperous Deepavali to all the Hindus in the country. The present that you have given me will be forever etched in my memory.
“While I applaud the financial assistance of all, special appreciation must be given to the members of the working class. Valga Samuthayam! Valga Tamil! (Long live the community! Long live the Tamil language!)
Interestingly, DAP’s former Klang MP Charles Santiago has lent credence to the struggle of his former DAP comrade by urging Malaysians to unite and contribute to the crowdfunding effort to assist Ramasamy in covering his RM1.52 mil payment.
“We’re hoping that by Deepavali (this Sunday), we’ll have reached the necessary amount of funds. I would like to urge all Malaysians to contribute to the funds since (Ramasamy) put his life on the line and is now paying the price,” Santiago said.
“At that time (when Ramasamy criticised Zakir), people said great things and supported him (Ramasamy) but now that something has happened, people run away and say ‘who asked you to make the statement?’
“That’s not the way we should respond. We supported him then, so we must follow through and donate (to the crowdfund initiative),” Scoop.my quoted the National Water Services Commission (SPAN) chairman as saying at a media conference in Petaling Jaya yesterday (Nov 8) alongside PKR’s Sentosa state assemblyman Gunaraj George.
Applauding those who have been willing to donate, Santiago further pointed out that Ramasamy is not the only figure who has been the target of civil defamation lawsuits by Zakir.
Others who have been involved in legal actions initiated by Zakir include Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran, former Bagan Dalam assemblyman Satees Muniandy, ex-Batu Uban assemblyman S. Raveentharan, and Santiago himself. – Nov 9, 2023