Who is Puad Zarkashi to tell FGV duo to resign, asks Nazri


KUALA LUMPUR: Who is Mohd Puad Zarkashi to tell Felda Global Ventures (FGV) chairman Mohd Isa Abdul Samad and CEO Zakaria Arshad to voluntarily resign from the company?

This was the question posed by Umno supreme council member Nazri Aziz, who said only Prime Minister Najib Razak had the right to make such calls.

“Who is Puad? I want to know; is he the prime minister? Why is his statement so important?

“We must listen to the statements made by the Malaysian prime minister. And we only have one prime minister. The others don’t matter.

“Even I am bigger than Puad,” he told a press conference at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Center here today.

Puad, who is also a member of Umno’s supreme council, had on his Facebook page yesterday told both Isa and Zakaria to “choose the dignified path” and let new blood take over the company.

He also said the FGV board’s decision to suspend Zakaria made it unlikely for the duo to ever work together again and hence they must be separated.

“They shouldn’t have to wait for the prime minister to intervene. They must be separated,” wrote Puad, who is also the head of the Special Affairs Department (Jasa).

On Tuesday, Zakaria and three others were suspended by the FGV board and were subjected to an internal probe.

Zakaria’s suspension came after he reportedly refused Isa’s request for him to resign over alleged wrongdoing with regard to payment due from an Afghan company.

Zakaria, in a letter to Isa, denied he had violated the corporate code of governance and said the credit terms were approved by his predecessor.

He also alleged that the decision came following his attempts to stop “ridiculous” investments proposed by the FGV board, which was led by Isa.

Asked on his thoughts regarding FGV’s internal crisis, Nazri, who is tourism and culture minister, said the company will not benefit from a public altercation between its leaders.

“Let the MACC (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission) investigate the matter.”

He also admitted that the probe would definitely have an effect on Felda’s shares but this will turn around once “we know the truth”.

“It’s because now we don’t know if (FGV) money has actually gone missing. That’s why the shares are slightly affected,” he said.