Sunday, February 13, 2011
Tengku Zafrul, Maybank’s wrong signal to the market
In a forum organised by Melayu Liberal group, Idea, Maybank Investment Banking CEO, Tengku Dato Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz commented that the appointment of former Negri Sembilan Menteri Besar, Tan Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad as Felda chairperson has been unsettling news for the market.
Malaysiakini quoted him saying further, “There have been many GLCs that have ex-politicians appointed as chairpersons, but Felda is a rare case, where the market is concerned with such an appointment. It sends the wrong signals.”
On the contrary, Zafrul.
The wrong signal to the market that is sending jitters to investors is emanating from Maybank. By the end of this posting, even Zafrul should be convinced that it is he himself that is unsettling the market.
If I am still active in the market, I will be MORE concerned with the general level of incompetence, lack of integrity, and unnationalistic spirit, including the absence of compassion for fellow Bumiputera, prevailing amongst the existing crop of so-called professionally trained young CEOs and senior executives of GLCs.
It will not just end there.
It goes all the way up to the CEO of Khazanah, Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar and his senios executives. Compunding further will be the problems of moral hazard and dishonesty of the Minister-in charge, Tan Sri Nor Mohamad Yakcop.
For someone who started his career in 1996, Zafrul rise straight to the top of the corporate food chain without any operating experience would unsettle any financial markets.
Zafrul began his career circa 1996 and his first job was believed to be as an Investment Analyst in a small French Bank, Credit Agricole. He became their representative Director.
He was then roped in as Investment Relation Officer at Tenaga Malaysia Berhad by the then Chairman Dato Seri Dr Jamaluddin bin Jarjis or JJ as everyone would call him.
When JJ moved to become Minister of Finance II, suddenly this average joe metereorically rose to become CEO of Government-owned, Avenue Asset or later Capital.
All it takes is to understand that his mother, Raja Zaharaton Raja Zainal Abidin was the Director General of Economic Planning Unit.
She represented the Government as Independent Director of TNB at the time of JJ and the time of Dato Dr Awang Adek Hussein as Chairmen of TNB in the mid 2000s.
His mother’s brother is now Senator Raja Dato Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin, the Federal Territory Minister and Urban Well Beings and Head of UMNO Lembah Pantai Division.
A nice man, nice Datin and nice daughter.
They say Zafrul has family relation via JJ’s wife, Datin Seri Dr Kalsom Ismail and it was when JJ was MoF II to Tun Dr Mahathir that he was appointed COO and later promoted to become CEO of Avenue.
One can read his bragging of himself in this Nut Graph interview here and this company profile of RZA here to get an idea of his family.
Zafrul fits the myCEOwatch blog description here as “the country’s most ambitious Malay crony of the first decade of the 21st century.” He fits in the model Melayu Liberal spewing neo-liberalism but practisioner of cronyism and nepotism. Read here and here.
His irresponsible view of Isa Samad is reflective of his arrogance from the ignorance of youth and his ideological and personal alliance with the most hated son-in-law in Malaysian history, Khairy Jamaluddin.
It was around the time of 2005 when Zafrul was at Avenue Asset, JJ was MoF II and mother Raja Zaharaton was Director General of EPU that there was an attempt to list the business operation of the Felda organisation, Felda Holdings Berhad.