KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 7 — The hearing of the government’s suit against National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) to recover RM253.6 million in loan repayments and interest from the company in connection with the National Feedlot Centre project in Gemas, Negri Sembilan, has been adjourned to tomorrow.

High Court Judge Anand Ponnudurai set tomorrow to resume hearing of the case, which was earlier fixed for today, after senior federal counsel Nurhafizza Azizan requested for postponement for both parties to negotiate for a possible out-of-court settlement.

Lawyer Datuk K. Kirubakaran, representing NFCorp, also informed the court that NFCorp chairman Datuk Dr Mohamad Salleh Ismail, who is supposed to testify today, was not in court.

Justice Annand, who has been transferred to Penang High Court, when adjourning the hearing to tomorrow, said the case had been going on for a long time since 2020 and in the past, the parties involved had requested for postponement to settle the matter.

“The parties could come to an amicable settlement while the trial is on-going. I think it’s better to proceed the case. If parties settle the suit, it is good. Otherwise, I do my job and make the decision,” he said,

In its suit, the government named the NFCorp as the first defendant, while Mohamad Salleh, who is former Women, Family and Community Development Minister Tan Sri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil’s husband, and their three children, Wan Shahinur Izran, Wan Shahinur Izmir and Wan Izzana Fatimah Zabedah, are the second to fifth defendants, respectively.

Other defendants are six companies controlled by Mohamad Salleh’s family, comprising National Meat & Livestock Corporation Sdn Bhd, Real Food Corporation Sdn Bhd, Meatworks Corporation Sdn Bhd, Agroscience Industries Sdn Bhd, Asian Bioscience Corporation Sdn Bhd, and Technology Imageware (M) Sdn Bhd.

The government claimed that it had signed a loan agreement totalling RM250 million with NFCorp on December 6, 2007, to finance the costs of establishing and operating a National Feedlot Centre in Gemas as part of its policy to develop and increase beef production.

The loan was disbursed in three tranches and Mohamad Salleh’s family was claimed to have made 10 withdrawals amounting to RM180.51 million from January 24, 2008, to January 3, 2011. — Bernama