Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Where Is Elie's RM1 Billion Promise?

KUALA LUMPUR, July 5 (Bernama) -- It has been five months since the controversial Lebanese millionaire, Elie Yousef Najem, made a pledge of RM1 billion to the National Cancer Council (Makna).
Makna president Datuk Mohd Farid Ariffin only shrugged off his shoulders when asked by reporters on Elie's pledge.
"If he does not give, I am not hoping for it but if there are people who want to donate, I shall accept. He breaks his promise, what can I do," he said after receiving a cheque for RM27,000 from Sharity Greetings here Wednesday.
Last February, Elie told reporters that he would bank in the money into Makna's account after several quarters raised doubts over his intention following his arrest by the police for alleged fraud.
Mohd Farid said he was not disappointed with Elie but the incident had made him more determined to continue to help cancer patients.
"Actually, it is not just Elie. There are many others who pledge to contribute but when the time comes, there is none," he added.
In another development, Mohd Farid said three cancer patients had benefited from a micro-credit scheme introduced by Makna since 1994 to help them improve their livelihood.
He said Makna had received 26 new applications from cancer patients for assistance under the scheme.
He said the successful applicants would be given between RM3,000 and RM5,000 each to carry out their respective ventures which could generate income.
They are given training and guidance, he added.
Besides Makna, Sharity Greetings, represented by its Chief Executive Officer Fred Choo and executive director, Michele Kwok, also contributed to the World Wide Fund For Nature (RM25,000), Shelter Home for Children (RM24,000) and Kiwanis Down Syndrome Foundation (RM24,000).

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