|Nigel Aw (MKini)
8:05AM Mar 13, 2012
Expectations were high that BN MPs attending an Agriculture Ministry meeting in Kuala Lumpur last night would be briefed on the NFC scandal.
However, Noh (left) spoke at length about the ministry’s fund disbursement to the MPs’ constituencies but declined to take questions on NFC.
“There are many questions for the Agriculture Ministry. There are also some burning questions, questions about Feedlot, but perhaps there is no need to answer that. This is already a (court) case, it’ll be subjudice,” he said.
Earlier yesterday morning, NFC chairperson Ismail Salleh was charged at the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court with two counts of criminal breach of trust and another two counts of violating the Companies Act 1965.
When met after the 30-minute briefing, Kota Belud MP Abdul Rahman Dahlan said the onus is now on NFC instead of the ministry to explain itself.
“The NFC, as far as I am concerned, is now a court case and this would be the best platform to counter any allegations or produce any proof of the alleged charges without the media fan fair.
“It would be a good avenue for them to articulate their point. In a way, that will be the best solution,” he said.
‘PAC to decide if case will be dropped’
Abdul Rahman (right), who is also a member of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), said the committee will convene tomorrow to determine if it should pursue the matter as it is now a court case.
“I am not sure if the PAC chairperson (Azmi Khalid) wants to pursue it in light of the latest event, but again, I think a lot of people feel the court is the best platform,” he said.
He adds that the two CBT charges against Salleh is a first step in unravelling the NFC fiasco.
“The charges are only for about RM49 million, (but) everybody is talking about RM250 million, so in a way that is already a first fact to be explained by this court proceeding,” he said.
When queried about Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua’s revelation that NFC’s audit report showed its directors had transferred close to RM81.4 million in funds out of the company, he replied: “They will have to reconcile it. Sometimes these figures… we need to make sure that they are correct.”
The charges against NFC’s boss comes four months after the company was accused of misappropriating much of its RM250 million government soft loan on luxury properties and holiday trips.
Last Sunday, Salleh’s wife, Shahrizat Abdul Jalil who is women, family and community development minister bowed to mounting pressure for her resignation by announcing that she would relinquish the post on April 8 once her senatorship expires.