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Lee Hsien Yang Suggests Settling Dispute Independently, Shanmugam Criticises Request For ‘Special Treatment’

Shanmugam Rejects Suggestion By Lee Hsien Yang For Independent Arbitration

The tension between Mr Lee Hsien Yang and Ministers K Shanmugam and Vivian Balakrishnan continues, as they respond to each other’s Facebook posts in rapidity.

This evening (5 Oct), Mr Lee took to Facebook to suggest settling their dispute via independent arbitration. The proposal comes after the ministers rejected his earlier suggestion to sue him in a London court.

Several hours later, Mr Shanmugam penned a joint response with Mr Balakrishnan, criticising the post.

Lee Hsien Yang suggests nominating independent judges

On Thursday (5 Oct), Mr Lee called out Mr Shanmugam and Mr Balakrishnan on Facebook for their decision to sue him in a Singapore court.

Source: Lee Hsien Yang on Facebook

He acknowledged that they had rejected his proposal to sue him in a London court since he made the allegedly offending statement in the UK.

In response to their decision to take action in the Singapore Courts, Mr Lee came up with another suggestion — to agree to an independent arbitration.

This means that each party would have to choose a judge of “high international standing”. He gave the example of a retired Singapore Supreme Court judge for the ministers.

The judges will then conduct the legal proceedings privately but make the outcome public. The decision will reportedly be “final and binding on all parties”.

Shanmugam rejects suggestion

Addressing the post several hours later, Law & Home Affairs Minister Shanmugam noted that the Singapore Courts have handled defamation cases “published to the people in Singapore” for decades.

Source: K Shanmugam Sc on Facebook

He highlighted that when given the chance, Mr Lee didn’t withdraw his statements. Therefore, they had no choice but to sue.

Since the statements pertained to “events in Singapore” and mainly targeted a “Singaporean audience”, they decided to take him to court here.

Mr Shanmugam wrote, “We have sued Mr Lee for a libel that was published to the people in Singapore, which concerns Singaporeans, and which is based on the laws of Singapore.”

Perhaps reacting to the countless back-and-forth, he said,

Ending his post, Mr Shanmugam claimed that Mr Lee merely wants “special treatment”. This is because he requested a different procedure from other defamation cases in Singapore.

Therefore, he asked why Mr Lee felt that he could make such statements but be exempt from the rules.

Back in September, Mr Shanmugam and Mr Balakrishnan sued Mr Lee for his Facebook post containing allegations about the Ridout Road saga.

Also read: Lee Hsien Yang Says Defamation Papers Served Via Facebook Messenger, Courts Gave Ministers Permission

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Featured image adapted from Lee Hsien Yang on Facebook and MCI Singapore on YouTube.

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