PETALING JAYA: Felda is not lacking in funds but these funds may have been misused, said its new chairman Shahrir Abdul Samad, as he questioned what happened to billions of ringgit in proceeds from Felda Global Ventures’ initial public offering.
“Felda received RM6 billion from the listing of FGV, which is its business property. From that amount, RM1.7 billion was spent as a windfall.
“We channelled RM15,000 to each of the settlers and their family, and there was still a balance of RM4.3 billion. So where did the RM4.3 billion go?” he was quoted as saying by Malay daily Sinar Harian.
Shahrir said he believed this was the reason that Felda settlers were disappointed with the agency, and he promised to make things right again.
The Johor Bahru MP also noted that around RM200 million of the funds were improperly spent, as was stated in the auditor-general’s report.
Shahrir said while it would be difficult to get all the money back, he would try his best to get at least a portion of it back.
“It’s not possible to get RM200 million back as it is gone. It was reported that various things were done without approval, and without following protocols set by the agency.
“That’s why I have been tasked to try and correct Felda’s financial position. It’s not that we don’t have the money, but yes, it may have been misused.”
He added that it is extremely important for the new management under his leadership to do its job right so they can get Felda settlers to be confident in the agency again.