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Zakaria All Smiles In Face Of FGV’s Inquiry Findings

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KUALA LUMPUR: Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) group president and chief executive officer Datuk Zakaria Arshad arrived at the Menara Felda building here at around 10am today.

As he entered the building’s lobby, he greeted the scrum of reporters on site with a smile.

When asked if he will be involved in the senior management meeting with newly-appointed chairman, Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid, he answered in the negative.

“I am not (in the) senior (management team). I have some matters to attend to ‘upstairs’,” he said.

It was reported on Sept 5 that the findings of the independent domestic inquiry on Zakaria would be delivered this week.

Zakaria and three other senior officials were placed on a leave of absence on June 6, pending a domestic inquiry into dealings between FGV’s Delima Oil Products and Safitex Trading LLC, which led to the Dubai-based company’s outstanding debt owed to FGV’s unit.

In a statement earlier, Zakaria said Azhar’s appointment will introduce a “fresh and positive perspective” to the board of directors and management currently embroiled in a “perception” crisis.

“I am also convinced that the recent positive momentum on FGV’s share price will continue, as the market is confident that Azhar and FGV’s management have the ability to steer the company back on the right track.

“It is my hope that this positive development will inject renewed spirit to the group and employees, and to maximise returns to stakeholders and shareholders, especially Felda and the settlers,” he added.

Azhar clocked in for duty today and began his tenure by attending a preliminary meeting with key management staff. He is expected to meet with board members later in the afternoon.

Yesterday, he was reported as saying that the first thing he will do is to “restore confidence in the company” and “sort any grey area” that needs to be sorted out.

“And I also want to make sure that we resolve the issue related to the CEO as quickly as possible,” he added. -NST

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