Felda activist Mazlan slams FGV CEO’s suspension

Activist Mazlan Aliman says the settlers community is disappointed with the action taken against FGV Holdings Bhd Group president and CEO Zakaria Arshad.

KULAI: The Majlis Permuafakatan Felda NGO has described the indefinite suspension of FGV Holdings Bhd Group president and CEO Zakaria Arshad as unfair and one that was done hastily.

Its chairman Mazlan Aliman said the suspension had put Zakaria – a settler’s son who had worked with Felda for 35 years – in a bad light.

“We want the government to intervene, but if it happens otherwise and Zakaria is not treated fairly, then we will organise a gathering in solidarity,” he said after attending the Malaysia Day celebration in Felda Bukit Ramun, Kulai, today.

Zakaria was suspended as head of the palm oil company on Sept 13 until further notice, the second time he has been suspended in 15 months.

His suspension came after the Minister of Finance Inc withdrew its nomination of Zakaria, 58, as a government-appointed director at the world’s largest crude palm oil producer.

Mazlan said the Felda settlers’ community was disappointed with the action as it was deemed unfair.

“We are sympathetic towards him over the situation that he faces even though his contract with FGV will only end in March 2019. It should not have ended under the present circumstances,” he said.

In another development, Mazlan asked the government to step in to review FGV’s position as the council felt that FGV’s listing on Bursa Malaysia by the previous government was a calamity that led to its adverse condition now.

He claimed that Felda lost its revenue of nearly 80% after Felda Plantation’s 360,000-hectare land was leased by FGV for 99 years.

“Prior to the listing, it had been contributing RM1 billion a year to Felda,” he said.