PETALING JAYA: The Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) has filed a statement of claim (SoC) against the National Feedlot Corp Sdn Bhd (NFC) over a sum of RM253.6mil owed to the government, reports The Edge.
The business news portal reported that the SoC was filed with the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Friday (May 31).
Named in the claim is NFC chairman Datuk Dr Mohamad Salleh Ismail (pic), plus his three children and six other companies owned by the family.
Salleh is the husband of former Wanita Umno chief Tan Sri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil.
The claim against NFC and the Salleh family amounts to RM253.62mil and represents the amount owed to the government, together with interest of 2% per annum and default interest on RM224.77mil.
It was reported that the government would also be seeking a declaration from the court to have Salleh’s family personally liable for the debt repayment, the sum of RM118.04mil misappropriated from the loan and secret profits arising from it, as well as Putrajaya’s entitlement to claim equitable title to the properties bought using NFC’s RM250 million loan from the government.
The NFC, set up in 2007 with its subsidiary National Feedlot Centre to expand the local beef industry, was purportedly aimed at reducing dependency on imported beef.
However, the project became embroiled in controversy for being poorly managed as noted in the Auditor-General's Report 2011.
On Jan 9, 2008, National Feedlot Corporation Sdn Bhd (NFC) received a loan facility of RM250,000,000 from the Federal Government at an interest rate of 2%, with a loan period of 20 years and grace period of three years.
This loan was secured by a debenture, which was signed alongside the loan agreement on Dec 6, 2007.
The Edge reported that through NFC, the Salleh family sought the government’s approval to make 10 withdrawals, amounting to a total of RM180.51mil from Jan 24, 2008, to Jan 3, 2011.
Of this, only RM8.32mil was paid directly to third parties to finance the national feedlot centre project, while the balance was channelled into another NFC account, of which RM118.04mil is said to have been misappropriated.
Of the misappropriated sum, RM9.76mil was allegedly used to partially pay for the acquisition of two residential units at One Menerung Residence by National Meat & Livestock Corp.
Last month, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said NFC still owed the government over RM250mil
Of this sum, Lim said that, RM110,840,854.28 was the amount due for repayment to the Federal Government as of April 30 this year, consisting of RM81,987,629.65 in outstanding in principal loan, loan interest of RM22,967,131.55 and late interest charges of RM5,886,093.08.
Salleh responded by saying that a new buyer of NFC was willing to fully settle the outstanding loan.