I don’t know, Noh Omar says of NFC breach of trust
By Shannon Teoh
February 14, 2012
Noh speaking during a visit to Edible-Birdnest Depositary and Trade Center at PT Swift Marketing Sdn Bhd in Puchong January 16 2012.
KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 14 — Datuk Seri Noh Omar insisted today he did not know if the National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) breached loan conditions despite de facto law minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz pointing out the family of their Cabinet colleague Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil should return the RM250 million federal loan.
The agriculture and agro-based industry minister said he could not comment as he has yet to receive any information from ongoing investigations into the controversial national cattle farming project.
“I don’t know. I don’t know because we have not received any decision. As agriculture minister, I have not received any report. Let them investigate,” he told reporters here.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri said earlier today NFCorp, owned by Wanita Umno chief Shahrizat’s husband and three children, had committed breach of trust by using the government loan meant for cattle farming to fund other purchases.
“The loan was given just for that. If you use the money for something else, you don’t need to be a lawyer to see that there is a breach of trust, it’s so simple,” the Padang Rengas MP had said.
PKR has made several claims of abuse of the federal loan involving over RM62 million in land, property and expenses unrelated to cattle farming.
Shahrizat’s son Wan Shahinur Izmir Salleh has insisted that the company decided it would make better use of the money by investing in property during a break in business operations due to the government’s decision to suspend construction of an abattoir that would have been rented to NFCorp.
The government awarded NFCorp the project in 2006, when Shahrizat was women, family and community development minister.
The senator, who still holds the portfolio applied for three weeks’ leave from her ministerial duties last month after new allegations of bribery surfaced. She has since resumed her duties.
Last Wednesday, she was called in for questioning by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
The former Lembah Pantai MP has refused to heed calls for her to resign that have come from the opposition and Umno leaders including influential former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced last month Putrajaya would appoint an auditor to scrutinise NFCorp’s books in light of accusations made against the company but dismissed calls for a royal commission of inquiry into the NFC.