Malaysia

NFCorp wants PKR leaders charged with disclosing private bank documents

By Yow Hong Chieh
March 31, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR, Mar 31 — The National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) said today that the PKR leaders who disclosed its financial documents to the media earlier this month must be probed for allegedly breaching the Banking and Financial Institutions Act 1989 (BAFIA).

The cattle-rearing firm said the party's strategic director Rafizi Ramli, Wanita chief Zuraida Kamaruddin and vice president Nurul Izzah Anwar seriously contravened BAFIA when they "illegally distributed private and confidential bank account documents" at a March 7 press conference and should be charged.

If guilty, they could face a jail term of up to three years and a RM3 million fine.

"Rafizi Ramli, being a highly trained accountant and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) as well as the Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA), should be familiar with the laws that prohibit public distribution of private and confidential bank account documents," NFCorp said in a statement.

It also said the bank the documents came from should be investigated for allegedly contravening BAFIA by handing confidential information on its customers to unauthorised third parties.

NFCorp pointed out that the documents given to reporters were internal bank printouts of credit ratings and bank balances, not regular statements sent to customers or downloaded via internet banking.

"It would be easy for Bank Negara Malaysia and the bank to track the culprit as the date and time of the print out are indicated. However, the bank officer's name had been deliberately inked out.

"In any case... the company did not have that many banks that it did business with and therefore BNM (Bank Negara Malaysia) would be able to track and identify from the audit trail," it said.

The firm added that it lodged a police report yesterday against Rafizi, Zuraida and Nurul Izzah.

NFCorp hit the headlines last year when the Auditor-General reported that it had missed production targets.

Its chairman Datuk Seri Dr Mohamed Salleh Ismail was later alleged to have misused a RM250 million government soft loan meant for the cattle rearing project on unrelated expenses.

On March 12, Mohamed Salleh, husband of federal minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Jalil, pleaded not guilty at the Sessions Court here to two counts of criminal breach of trust involving RM49.7 million with regard to the purchase of two condominium units.

He also pleaded not guilty to two other charges under the Companies Act.