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Legislation and Opinion Bureau director sued over Facebook post

By Rana Husseini - Dec 07,2015 - Last updated at Dec 07,2015

AMMAN — A government official on Monday said he was referring to a handful of people when he used his Facebook account to describe those who criticised him as animals.

Two lawyers have filed lawsuits against Nofan Ajarmeh, director of the Legislation and Opinion Bureau at the Prime Ministry, accusing him of slander and defamation.

Ajarmeh had allegedly posted several comments on his personal Facebook page on December 4 describing people who criticised government decisions as animals.

“Those who criticise the government for hiking prices are like animals and their waste,” he reportedly posted on his Facebook page.

Ajarmeh told The Jordan Times that he was directing his comments to “a handful of people who harshly criticised [him] and targeted [him] personally”.

“I did not make any mistake against any individual and this is personal since these individuals criticised only me as if I were the one who imposed these new regulations,” he said.

Ajarmeh was referring to the recent government decision to raise the price of gas cylinders and car licensing fees.

Two lawyers have since filed lawsuits against him.

One of them, Tarek Abul Ragheb, said in a statement made available to The Jordan Times that he had criticised the government for raising the licence fees on Facebook and was practicing his right “to express his opinion.”

“I was surprised to see Ajarmeh’s post shortly after I published mine describing people who criticised the decision as animals and animal waste,” Abul Ragheb wrote in a memo that was presented to the prosecutor. 

Meanwhile, Ajarmeh said that when the case is over in courts and he is “hopefully pronounced innocent", he plans to file lawsuits against these two lawyers for defamation.

 

“I have faith in the justice system and that I will be declared innocent, and when I am, I will file a lawsuit against the lawyers who filed a case against me.”

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