PUTRAJAYA, Nov 5 – Putrajaya will take legal action against National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) for failure to repay the RM250 million loan for its cattle-rearing project. Finance minister Datuk Seri Najb Razak said the company was to repay the loan from 2012 to 2028. As of September this year, the company had repaid only RM34.98 million, which is part of the 2012 and 2013 repayments.
“Repayments for this year, which matured in January 6, had yet to start,” he told Khalid Samad (PAS-Shah Alam) in a written reply. As a result, Putrajaya has issued a notice to NFCorp in May, giving it a 90-day extension to repay the loan. But the company failed to adhere to the new deadline, prompting Putrajaya to issue an event of default notice on September 4 to the company ceasing its agreement and initiate legal action.
Last year, Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah said the government had recovered RM79.9 million from NFCorp by freezing its accounts through the Anti-Money Laundering Act. He had said the government had also sealed NFCorp’s assets worth RM23.3 million, namely two parcels of land in Putrajaya, two units of real estate in Menerung Township Villa and three plots of land in Gemas.
Putrajaya had also revealed that talks for another firm to take over the project had collapsed, with the Finance Ministry confirming that negotiations with Kirimitonas Agro Sdn Bhd (KASB), a joint venture between a local investor and a meat producer in Japan, have ended. The NFCorp scandal was first exposed by the Auditor General Report 2011, which stated that the cattle-rearing project had not met its milestones, followed by revelations by PKR’s Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli that the funds were abused to buy high-end property.
The project was awarded to NFCorp operated by the family of Wanita Umno head Datuk Seri Shahrizat Jalil, whose husband Datuk Seri Dr Mohamed Salleh Ismail chaired the company’s board of directors, which included the couple’s children. They were later alleged to have misused the government’s allocation of RM250 million for the project. Salleh pleaded not guilty in March last year to two counts of criminal breach of trust involving some RM49.7 million, with regards to the purchase of two condominium units and two other charges under the Companies Act.