A Malay NGO has blasted the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) over an alleged RM6 billion loan Felda, calling for the fund to make a full disclosure to its contributors.
“If it is true (that EPF had made the loan), all the EPF contributors have the right to know to how the loan is guaranteed by Felda, for what period it is made and for what purpose,” said Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid, Teras president in a statement today.
He noted that it was curious how the loan could be approved, when Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Ahmad Maslan had once insisted that Felda had chalked a profit of RM1.197 billion last year.
Mohd Azmi asked how the huge loan was being justified and if attention had been paid to its terms, noting that EPF holders were not protected in the event Felda defaults.
He added that regardless of the justifications for such a transaction, it is also a financial burden the Felda settlers.
“In the end, it is the Felda settlers and EPF contributors who bear the risks of the loan,” said Mohd Azmi.
'Straight answer please'
The president of the Malay empowerment NGO blasted Ahmad Maslan for his "flip-flop" and "evasive" answers in Parliament over the loan.
“The question was simple: why did Felda need to take out a huge RM6 billion loan from EPF, and why did its investment through Felda Global Ventures abroad lost RM500 million from 2007 to 2010?” Mohd Azmi said.
The minister's replies, he added, were “vague and raises more questions” causing Felda settlers to seriously doubt the agency's management. He reminded that the minister himself had also admitted to Parliament that Felda reserves declined from more than RM4 billion in 2004 to RM1.35 billion in 2009.
Last month, Persatuan Anak Peneroka Felda Kebangsaan (Anak), a land rights group linked to PAS, claimed it had evidence of the controversial loan in the form of a record in a past Felda meeting's minutes.
Teras' call comes hot on the heels of a plague of lawsuits against Felda, the latest of which is a RM344 million suit for fraud and breach of trust brought by 711 settlers in Jengka, Pahang.
KWSP diminta jelaskan pinjaman RM6 bilion Felda