Court tell former airline boss Tajuddin to pay RM589mil loan

Court tell former airline boss Tajuddin to pay RM589mil loan

KUALA LUMPUR: Former Malaysia Airlines chairman Tan Sri Tajuddin Ramli has been ordered to pay RM589mil he owed to Pengurusan Danaharta Nasional Bhd and two of its subsidiaries.

The amount was the balance of a RM1.79bil loan given to him by a group of lenders to finance the purchase of a 32% stake in MAS in 1994.

High Court Judicial Commissioner Anantham Kasinather ordered Tajuddin to pay Danaharta Nasional, Danaharta Urus Sdn Bhd and Danaharta Managers Sdn Bhd the principal sum owed at Dec 31, 2005, of RM589,143,205.57 plus interest at 2% above the Malayan Banking Bhd base lending rate from Jan 1, 2006, until realisation.

He also ordered Tajuddin to pay costs amounting to RM350 to the plaintiffs.

The court had also earlier struck out Tajuddins counter claim of damages. Tajuddin, who failed to get a stay on the judgment, is filing an appeal.

Lim Kian Leong was lead counsel for Tajuddin while Tommy Thomas represented Danaharta.

The payout is one of the largest to be ordered by a court in a suit that has drawn wide attention more for the corporate and political personalities involved rather than the agreements, settlements and unpaid debts.

In his statement of claim, Tajuddin had stated that then Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had instructed him to acquire a 32% stake in MAS to bail out Bank Negara which had experienced losses in foreign exchange.

Dr Mahathir later told the media he did not remember doing that and it was former Finance Minister Tun Daim Zainuddin who told him that Tajuddin was interested in the shares.

In the 20-page judgment released yesterday, JC Anatham said Tajuddin had executed an agreement to borrow RM1.792bil but from 1994 to 1998, he had failed to service the loan.

In 1998, he said, Danaharta acquired Tajuddins NPL from the lenders under the Pengurusan Danaharta Nasional Bhd Act, adding that Tajuddin failed to settle his debt to Danaharta from 1998 to 2001.

He said Tajuddin executed a settlement agreement with Danaharta in Oct 2001, in which he admitted he had been in default of the original loan, and Danaharta agreed to give him a hair-cut by discounting the sum if he complied with certain terms.

When Tajuddin defaulted on the payment of the quarterly interest, Danaharta issued a letter of demand, resulting in the tycoon filing for an injunction to restrain them from selling the charged shares, said JC Anantham.

The High Court dismissed the application and Danaharta terminated the settlement agreement on April 27, 2002, and demanded payment from Tajuddin.

On April 29, the plaintiffs sold part of the charged shares consisting of Technology Resources Industries (TRI) shares at RM2.75 per share resulting in total share proceeds of RM717,393,875.

JC Anantham said that on May 11, 2006, Danaharta sued to recover the balance of RM589,143,205.57 that was still owed on Dec 12, 2005.

He said the termination of an agreement did not preclude the other party from referring to its terms and conditions, adding that the settlement agreement expressly conferred on Danaharta the right to revert to the loan agreement to sue, following a default by Tajuddin. … sec=nation

can give personal loans like dat ka?
sure Dr. m knew about the deal…it involved a GLC and UMNO man

as expected la…"Dr Mahathir later told the media he did not remember doing that "…heheh…
wahh…so long already baru naik balik ka this case? how come never heard of it before in news?