GLCs should be run by professionals, not politicians, says Daim

Government-linked companies (GLCs) should be run by professionals with the “highest level of integrity and competency” and not politicians, former finance minister Daim Zainuddin told The Malaysian Insight in an exclusive interview.

These were among the suggestions he had on the topic of GLC efficiency. He also mooted that GLCs implement a salary cut across the top management of these companies to help them weather the Covid-19 crisis. 

The former finance minister acknowledged that there were some initiatives by the likes of Tenaga Nasional Bhd and Telekom Malaysia under the Prihatin package, but said these were temporary. 

GLCs, including banks, should look at how they can reduce their fixed costs, he added.

“As far as I have read, many private companies have been forced to implement pay cuts from the highest management to administrative staff just to stay afloat.

“So far, except for Malaysia Airlines, I have not read of any GLC talking about pay cuts for its top management. Some have mentioned cutting benefits for board members, but how much does this amount to?” Daim said. 

He then said that GLCs should step in at a time when ordinary Malaysians were struggling to keep their heads above water.

“Shouldn’t GLCs also be doing their part? More so now, when so many of them are being headed by politicians. So, in addition to their MP salaries, their private business salaries, this group of MPs are also now earning huge, fat salaries from the GLCs.

“When you think that GLCs are essentially public entities, is it fair that so much income is being concentrated in the hands of so few, especially politicians? Let professionals with the highest level of integrity and competency manage these companies,” Daim told TMI. – June 18, 2020 

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