Socio-political activist Leong Sze Hian has raised over S$100,000 in crowd-funded donations to pay damages and cost of a defamation suit brought by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.
Leong, a People’s Voice Party member and candidate for GE2020, had asked for donations to pay the S$133,000 awarded to PM Lee.
Commenting on the speed at which the money was raised, Leong’s lawyer Lim Tean said that many more Singaporeans are waiting to contribute, and that this would serve as a “powerful” message to PM Lee and the PAP.
“Can you imagine the impact when 100% of damages are paid for by the People of Singapore?”
Leong had shared a post on his Facebook page from a Malaysian online news website in Nov 2018, which accused PM Lee of corruption and being complicit in criminal activity regarding Malaysia’s 1MDB.
He took down the shared post 3 days later, after being instructed to by the Infocommunications Media Development Authority.
Last week, the court ordered Leong to pay PM Lee $100,000 in damages and S$33,000 in aggravated damages for impugning PM Lee’s character.
Leong has expressed his gratitude to the public for their donations, and said he is deliberating whether to appeal the verdict.