KUALA LUMPUR, March 19 — The Ministry of Finance (MoF) is preparing a clear guideline on the remunerations to be paid out to directors in government-linked companies (GLCs) as part of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government’s efforts to eradicate patronage.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said those who held such positions, including the chairmen, had been paid “obscenely high” salaries.
“We find that some of the remunerations package is obscenely high,” he said in a keynote address at the Invest Malaysia 2019 conference here today.
The Prime Minister’s Office is finalising the Guidelines on Remuneration of Directors and Key Senior Management of Government Entities, a key election pledge by Pakatan Harapan.
‘From now on, rewards will be based on performance.
“Those who in the wrong, will be removed only capable, with integrity and high moral values will be selected to lead these entities,” Dr Mahathir said.
The move comes after PH was criticised for several appointments of political leaders into GLCs or state-funded foundations, prompting accusations of cronyism similar to that practised by Barisan Nasional.
Today, Dr Mahathir told international investors the new administration has taken measures to ensure active politicians will no longer be appointed as Malaysian Head of Mission and in any listed GLCs.
He did not explain if the guideline would extend into government-linked investment corporations or state foundations.
The new guidelines for GLC appointments were touted as part of a wider reform initiative to mitigate corruption in key institutions.
PH is already working towards limiting the prime minister’s term to two terms and the separation of the responsibilities of the attorney general and the public prosecutor.
The ruling coalition is also giving the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission more bite by ensuring its independence. It is now aiming to have the appointment of the MACC chief commissioner done via Parliament Select Committee.
Dr Mahathir said the Cabinet Special Committee on Anti-Corruption has given its approval and the MACC Act will be amended soon.