KUALA LUMPUR (April 29): The Securities Commission Malaysia’s (SC) managing director Foo Lee Mei, general counsel Chee Fei Meng plus executive director of digital strategy and innovation Chin Wei Min are understood to have quit.
However, it is not known what prompted each of them to leave the commission.
On Thursday (April 28), the SC announced the resignation of Datuk Syed Zaid Albar whose term was extended for a three-year period in October last year. He will be replaced by former deputy finance minister Datuk Dr Awang Adek Hussin, who will resume the post on June 1
Foo, according to sources familiar with the commission, has tendered her resignation recently. Meanwhile, Chee, who is also an executive director, has opted not to renew her contract.
Chee joined the SC in April 2019. She was the CIMB group legal head prior to joining the regulator. Chin, on the other hand, joined the commission as an executive director in April 2016.
Foo served as a deputy public prosecutor (DPP) with the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) for six years before joining the regulator in 1994. In 2004, she was re-gazetted as a DPP by the Attorney General and continued to lead SC appeals in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Federal Court.
Foo’s role was instrumental in air cargo service provider Transmile Group Bhd’s accounting fraud involving inflating revenue with fake invoices. The extensive accounting scandal was red-flagged by the company’s then external auditor in 2007, and the board then conducted a forensic audit of Transmile’s accounts to reveal the truth.
Transmile’s former chief executive officer and founder Gan Boon Aun was found guilty of furnishing misleading statements, with the intent to deceive, relating to the company’s revenue for the financial years ended Dec 31, 2005 and 2006.
After 15 years, the Sessions Court found Gan guilty of furnishing misleading financial statements to Bursa Malaysia. He was fined RM2.5 million (in default 18 months’ imprisonment) and sentenced to a day in jail last year.
The SC later appealed to increase the jail sentence from one day to 24 months. However, the hearing did not take place in the count as Gan was on the run.
Back to the present, Foo has encountered a similar case in external red-flagged audit issues of Serba Dinamik Holdings Bhd over the past one year.
Following investigations by the SC and with the initial consent of the AGC, Serba Dinamik and four of its senior executives were charged on Dec 28, 2021, accused of submitting a false statement in relation to the company’s record high revenue of RM6.01 billion for the 12-month period ended Dec 31, 2020.
But about two weeks ago, the AGC decided to withdraw the charges following a letter of representation by the accused. The AGC has not publicly explained its decision.
This left the SC with only the option to issue compound fines and it did so on April 12, imposing the maximum fine allowed of RM3 million each against the company and the four individuals, with an additional RM1 million against vice-president of accounts and finance Muhammad Hafiz Othman.