KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia The resignation of Khazanah Nasional Bhd’s Managing Director and board members will enable the government to restructure the sovereign wealth fund accordingly, said Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
He said the board members’ resignation is a move to clear the deck to allow the government to restructure it in line with policies of the new administration.
It is the Prime Minister’s prerogative to appoint the fund’s new board members, re-designation to other entities and retain some of them to allow for continuity, he said in a statement here today.
Dr Mahathir also said the government is not on a witch-hunt.
We do not regard everyone as guilty of everything, but this administration will not accept obvious wrongdoings.This action of clearing the deck will allow restructuring as our policies are now different. While we believe in paying good salaries, we cannot all the time base it on commercial rates.
We would rather focus on rewarding with good bonuses tied to performance as some companies may not perform as they should, he explained.
On reports that RM2 billion had been wiped out from Bursa Malaysia, Dr Mahathir asserted the amount of paper loss was nothing compared to the burden of a RM1 trillion debt that had been inherited and is now being shouldered by the current government.
It was reported that six of Khazanah Nasional’s ten key stocks on Bursa Malaysia yesterday had declined, losing about RM2 billion in combined market value.
The amount of debt is real, the amount needed to service the debts is real. And most of the amounts ‘invested’ by the previous administration has yet to be recovered as we do not know where they have been ‘invested’, Dr Mahathir said.
Yesterday, Khazanah Nasional confirmed news reports that all its board members, including the Managing Director, had offered to resign.
In a statement issued by the fund, it said this was to facilitate a smooth and orderly transition under the new government.
Source: NAM News Network