Vets want servicemen in Boustead to stop LTAT deal

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Armed forces veterans today called out to their comrades on the Boustead Holdings Berhad board to block the controversial 'buyout' involving businessman Deepak Jaikishan and Selangor Umno Wanita chief Raja Ropiaah Raja Abdullah.

"Are the generals on the board simply yes-men, who just nod their heads?" asked retired Royal Malaysian Air Force brigadier general Abdul Hadi Abdul Khatab.

He explained that the current armed forces chief, chief secretary of the Defence Ministry, as well as all the deputy chiefs of all armed forces branches are on the Boustead board.

Abdul Hadi who is PKR security committee head said this at a press conference at party headquarters in Petaling Jaya today.

He argued that the deal which saw RM130 million paid to Deepak's Astacanggih Sdn Bhd and a further RM160 million to be paid to Raja Ropiaah's (left) Awan Megah for the land is detrimental to military personnel and veterans who had contributed to the Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera (LTAT), which controls and has heavily invested in Boustead.

PKR director director of strategy Rafizi Ramli, who was also at the press conference, alleged that the Boustead wholly-owned subsidiary directly involved in both deals, Bakti Wira Sdn Bhd, does not have the assets and financial viability needed to secure and pay for the loans needed the finance the land deal.

As such, Rafizi believes that the investment will later be "written off" and rationalised as "impaired investment", resulting in the loss of millions to Bousted, LTAT and ultimately military veterans and personnel.

Abdul Hadi shared Rafizi's view, fearing for the fate of LTAT funds.

'Moral duty to speak up'

"They have a moral duty to speak up and speak out if the deal is detrimental to armed forces personnel who contribute to LTAT," said Abdul Hadi, who is also president of Pahlawan, a PKR-linked association representing former military officers.

Abdul Hadi (right) hit out at irresponsible parties which he believed misused their power and made use of LTAT and Boustead to execute the "buy-out" for the political benefit of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.

"The interests of the many contributors should not be outweighed by the benefit of one person."

Boustead RM30 million 'buy-out' of Astanacanggih and RM160 million land deal with Awan Megah has been accused as an attempt to settle with Raja Ropiaah and silence Deepak, who has came out with relevations linking the premier and his family with the alleged cover-up of evidence and testimonies related to the infamous murder of Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu.

Deepak made it clear that his revelations follows his being allegedly 'cheated' by Raja Ropiaah and business and contracts being "disturbed".

Out of the blue, Boustead had emerged to buy out both Deepak's firm and the land over which he is in a legal dispute with Raja Ropiaah.

Deepak (left) claims that he was strong-armed into the deal as well as forced to settle his legal suit against Raja Ropiaah, which many saw as an attempt to silence him.

Abdul Hadi said that his organisation and fellow veterans from PAS-linked former armed forces officers' NGO Kerabat will deploy in numbers to Boustead's registered office at Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur later this afternoon.

As LTAT contributors and and therefore de facto shareholders in Boustead, they aim to have sight of company documents that detail both transactions.

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