PKR baits rural voters with NFC issue ahead of polls

(The Malaysian Insider) – The National Feedlot Corporation (NFC) scandal has proven to be a hit among rural voters, according to PKR leaders who plan to use the issue as campaign fodder for the general elections.

The Malaysian Insider understands that Pakatan Rakyat, especially PKR have been going on a pre-polls campaign blitz using the graft allegations surrounding embattled Cabinet minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil and her family to maximise voter support.

“In a way we are actually lucky. The NFC issue couldn’t have come at a better time. Before this we were always trying to give examples of what we claim to be corruption by Umno-Barisan Nasional.

“But with this issue, we have a golden opportunity to reach out to a host of voters… for us, Shahrizat’s case is the best example of what is wrong with Umno and its leaders… corruption, cronyism, money politics,” Rafizi (picture) Ramli told The Malaysian Insider.

The PKR strategic director said that recent “test runs” by party leaders during ceramahs showed an increasing demand for the NFC scandal to be highlighted, especially among rural voters.

“In Kemaman, for instance where there’s a ceramah, sometimes I don’t bring up the NFC issue but then they get upset. The kampung folk, rural folk want to talk to about it. They are upset about it,” he said.

“It’s something they can relate to…you talk about submarine scandals it’s a bit confusing, but with the NFC it’s about lembu (cows)- how much do you need to menternak lembu (take care of cows) and how do you make money out of it.

“Whenever we mention the figures, people are outraged,” added Rafizi.

He said PKR has also taken steps to ensure the entire chronology of the scandal could be “appreciated” and understood by all via pamphlets and posters.

PKR first latched onto the issue after the RM250 million federally-funded cattle project made it into the pages of the Auditor-General’s report for 2010, which described the NFC as “a mess”.

Since then, the party has made several revelations related to the scandal, including the NFC’s purchase of twin multi-million luxury condominium units in Bangsar, the alleged use of project funds to finance Shahrizat and her family’s personal expenses and trips abroad.

It also alleged there was a transfer of resources to unrelated companies in Singapore, as well as the purchase a Mercedes-Benz CLS350 for RM534,622 and two plots of land in Putrajaya’s Precinct 10 for RM3,363,507.