Influencer To Fork Out RM100,000 For Body Shaming A Woman & Calling Her "Babi Kuning"

The Court of Appeal also rejected the influencer's, Eira Aziera, appeal against the High Court's RM100,000 fine.

Cover image via Utusan Malaysia & FMT

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The Court of Appeal yesterday, 12 October, upheld a compensation order of RM100,000 against social media influencer Noorazira Pissal, more commonly known as Eira Aziera, for body shaming a woman

The case centres around a distressing incident of body shaming, cyberbullying, and defaming Suharnizan Md Sidek, a commissioner of oath, on Facebook three years ago in 2020, reported Bernama.

A three-member bench of judges, led by Datuk Seri Kamaludin Md Said, Datuk Ahmad Zaidi Ibrahim, and Datuk S M Komathy Suppiah, unanimously affirmed the Johor Bahru High Court's decision.

The bench agreed that the derogatory remarks such as "babi kuning" uttered by the defendant, Eira, did not require expert verification and were indeed defamatory in nature, reported New Straits Times.

Social media influencer Eira Aziera.

Image via FMT

Eira's defence attorney, Yahaya Ahmad, argued that the claims against his client were hearsay. However, the Court emphasised that the High Court's initial ruling was sound and that Eira's appeal lacked merit.

The three-panel bench, while taking into account the factors of body shaming and cyberbullying, also ruled that the awarded compensation of RM100,000 was reasonable and was "not excessive or insufficient".

Earlier, when Yahaya argued that all claims against Eira were hearsay, Suharnizan's legal team, lawyers Rasheed Hassan and Ashraf Hilmy, argued that Eira herself had admitted to making the video.

The case began when Suharnizan filed a lawsuit in October 2020

She filed the lawsuit, seeking over RM2 million in damages against Eira, who, in a video posted online, used derogatory remarks such as comparing Suharnizan's body shape to that of a pig.

Eira had also shared pictures of the woman and her children on social media.

According to Eira, she was angry and failed to control her emotions after Suharnizan left a comment questioning the weight-loss product that she was promoting on her Facebook livestream.

This led to widespread public condemnation and an eventual public apology from Eira after Suharnizan claimed being cyberbullied sent her into depression and left her unable to focus on her work.

Following Eira's apology in September 2020, Suharnizan's legal team stated that it alone could not cover the damage and trauma she had caused to their client.

"We are not satisfied with how she (Eira) conducted it, we want the script to come from us and we wanted her to promise to never do this again in the future. We wanted this case to be a lesson to other members of the public that you would not get away with anything that you said on social media," they said.

In June this year, the Johor Bahru High Court had ordered Eira to fork out RM100,000 in damages and RM30,000 in legal costs to Suharnizan, as well as to publish a clear and unconditional apology.

Suharnizan Md Sidek.

Image via Utusan Malaysia

For the record, body shaming is a cyberbullying crime in Malaysia

Victims can report the offence to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).

According to Section 233 (1) (b) Communication and Multimedia Act 1998 (Act 588), if found guilty, the offender can be fined no more than RM50,000 or jailed for no more than a year, or both.

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