24 Dec 2010

Sime sues ex-CEO and others over losses

Government-owned conglomerate Sime Darby Bhd has filed a suit against its former chief executive officer Ahmad Zubir Murshid and four company officials over RM2.1 billion losses incurred in three projects.

At least RM189 million in damages have been sought over losses suffered by the company in the Qatar Petroleum Project (QP), the Maersk Oil Qatar (MOQ) Project and its 'Marine Project' which involves the construction of vessels for the MOQ.

Four others that are being sued are former executive vice-president of the Energy and Utilities division Mohamad Shukri Baharom, the division's chief financial officer Abdul Rahim Ismail, the division's oil and gas unit chief Abdul Kadir Alias and Mohd Zaki Othman from Sime Engineering.

“They have all been sued for breaches of duties owed to the Sime Darby Group,” the company said in a statement on its website late this evening.

“Sime Darby Group is claiming from the defendants, inter alia, restitution for monies wrongfully paid out, damages for losses suffered, loss of profit, aggravated damages and costs,” it added.

The company has engaged Zaid Ibrahim & Co as its solicitors while Tommy Thomas was appointed counsel. The suit was filed at the Kuala Lumpur High Court this afternoon.

Accused of negligence

According to the statement of claim, the five were also accused of negligence in allowing Sime Darby Engineering to pursue engineering, procurement, construction, installation and commissioning (EPCIC) projects in which it had no prior experience.

They were also accused of awarding EPCIC projects to inexperienced subcontractors and failing to pursue claims for work not done.

In September, Sime Darby announced that a lawsuit would be filed this month after a forensic audit found into the energy and utilities division had established a prima facie case of mismanagement.

The century-old government-linked company recorded an operating loss of RM1.7 billion in its energy and utilities division in 2010 after making additional provisions of RM777.3 million for the fourth quarter, ending June 30.

The overall provisions made in the financial year 2010 amounted to a whopping RM2.1 billion. Its net profit of RM726 million for 2010 is a far cry from the RM2.3 billion the previous year.

Following the release of the forensic audit, the MACC has also began its probe into the company.

Source : http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/151562

No comments: