Report: Telekom chairman refuses to appoint CEO selected by MoF Inc

Imri Mokhtar speaks during a special media briefing in Kuala Lumpur July 3, 2018. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Imri Mokhtar speaks during a special media briefing in Kuala Lumpur July 3, 2018. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, May 31 — The chairman of Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM) Rosli Man has refused to proceed with the appointment of Imri Mokhtar as chief executive officer (CEO), despite the decision of its special shareholder, financial daily The Edge reports.

Imri is currently the acting chief executive officer.

Telekom has had no CEO for a year since the resignation of Datuk Seri Shazalli Ramli who was also a media adviser for former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, June last year.

Sources told financial daily that TM's statement on Wednesday, when it said that the appointment of its CEO has to go through due process with MoF and its board of directors, was not really the case.

Sources claimed that a decision was made in February by MoF to appoint Imri as CEO but it has been three months and Rosli has refused to act on it.

Initially, Datuk Bazlan Osman was appointed as acting CEO but he resigned in a sudden move on November 16, and that's when Imri was made acting CEO.

However, on November 30, then chairman Tan Sri Dr Sulaiman Mahbob also resigned and Rosli was appointed to replace him.

Sources told The Edge that the Telekom board under Sulaiman had recommended that Imri be made CEO and this was agreed by MoF Inc, which subsequently obtained clearance from Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to proceed.

The sources said Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng then informed Rosli, Imri and TM's company secretary Hamizah Abidin of the decision via a letter in February but Rosli did nothing.

It is not clear why Rosli is stalling Imri's appointment but sources said it is likely because he wants his own appointee.

At Telekom's annual general meeting on Wednesday, some shareholders had asked about the delay in appointing a CEO and were told by Rosli that no decision has been made by the controlling shareholders.

The Edge reported that Rosli did not want to meet the media after AGM, but in response to questions posed by the paper, the company issued a statement to say that the appointment of new CEO had to go through due process with its controlling shareholders and the board.

TM is a government-linked company in which Khazanah Nasional Bhd has a 26 per cent stake.

MoF Inc has a special share which gives it power to make certain decisions.

* A previous version of this story contained an error which has since been corrected.

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