CEOs bonus: Straits Times barking up the wrong tree again
CEO’s bonus: Straits Times barking up the wrong tree again
April 4, 2009 by admin
By Jeremy Koh, Guest Columnist
I am most amused by the recent media spotlight on Capitaland CEO Liew Mun Leong’s hefty bonus of S$20.5 million dollars in 2007. (read article here)
While I have lost quite a substantial sum in my Capitaland shares, I am not going to rise up in arms to protest against the board’s decision to award the bonuses.
As a public-listed company, the Board of Directors of Capitaland has to explain its decision to its shareholders. The pay and bonuses of its top honchos are also correctly and completely disclosed in its annual reports.
What I find disturbing is the lack of transparency on the salaries and bonuses received by Liew’s boss - Madam Ho Ching of Temasek Holdings which owns the majority share in Capitaland and by extension to her father-in-law GIC Chairman Lee Kuan Yew.
The shareholders of Temasek Holdings and GIC are every Singapore citizen for their funds come from the taxpayers. Since Temasek has already pledged to uphold higher standards of transparency by revealing its yearly audited accounts and balance sheets, why is it still reluctant to disclose the salaries and bonuses of its top executives?
I am interested to know the monthly salary of Madam Ho Ching, her bonuses received as Temasek CEO from 2002 to now, the perks and benefits due to her and whether there is any severance package for her.
Somebody told me that Mr Lee was not paid a single cent as Chairman of GIC and he is holding that portfolio on a “voluntary” basis to safeguard the reserves of Singapore. Again, it will be better if GIC can reveal the salaries and bonuses of its executives.
These questions should have been raised by the media a long time ago. They were given another opportunity to do so when Madam Ho Ching announced her resignation lately, but nothing was written so far.
Is the media’s hounding of Mr Liew a ploy to deflect attention away from Madam Ho and Mr Lee? How come I don’t see any feature article on them?
I see no reason why Singaporeans are kept in the dark over the salaries paid to the staff of Temasek and GIC. It was announced sometime last year that Temasek executives had accepted a pay cut of 20%, but there was no mention of their salaries in absolute numbers.
Given the tragic performance of Temasek and GIC last year which have lost a substantial amount of our hard-earned reserves, I proposed that its top executives take a further pay cut of 50% and returned any bonuses they have received.
There was a huge furore over the bonuses paid out to AIG directors lately which saw some Americans protesting right in front of their homes. Public pressure eventually forced most of them to forfeit their ill-gotten bonuses.
Singaporeans are generally a kind and forgiving people. Temasek and GIC executives need not fear anything by disclosing their salaries and bonuses. If they feel they truly deserve the renumeration received, then they should not be ashamed to reveal it.
RH: MY ACQUAINTANCE, MR DAVID DUCLOS, A FORMER POLICE INSPECTOR, AND HIS LAWYER FRIEND, EYEWITNESSED LEE KUAN YEW RIGGING THE 1997 CHENG SAN GRC ELECTION. READ MORE AT MY BLOG ENTITLED "I CAME, I SAW, I SOLVED IT" :
[ALSO AT THE ABOVE BLOG, LIE KUAN YEW's LIES, CORRUPTION, WRONGFUL JAILING, TORTURE AND BEATING TO DEATH OF INNOCENT POLITICAL PRISONERS LIKE MR CHAN HOCK HUA]
READ ALSO MARTYN SEE's INTERVIEW WITH ME AT:
FOR QUICK, IRREVERENT REASONS WHY LIE KY DESERVES A NOBEL:
MY ARCHIVE OF WORKS AT: