Liew Mun Leong steps down from posts

Mr Liew Mun Leong, 74, quit his posts in four organisations, including Changi Airport Group and Temasek.
Mr Liew Mun Leong, 74, quit his posts in four organisations, including Changi Airport Group and Temasek.

Six days after the High Court acquitted his former maid of theft and questioned his motivation in lodging a police report against her, sparking an online backlash, Mr Liew Mun Leong resigned from his posts in four organisations yesterday.

The 74-year-old stepped down as chairman of Changi Airport Group (CAG) and Surbana Jurong, and from his positions as senior international business adviser at Singapore investment firm Temasek and as a board member of Temasek Foundation.

In a statement last night on his decision to "bring forward my retirement" from the four organisations, Mr Liew said he did not wish his current situation to be a distraction to their respective boards, management and staff, amid their many critical priorities.

He added: "The High Court has made its decision. I have faith in our legal system and respect the decision of the High Court."

Mr Liew noted that both the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) and the police are conducting reviews of the matter. "Should it be required, my family and I will continue to provide full cooperation to both AGC and the police," he said.

The Liews' former helper of nine years, Ms Parti Liyani, 46, was convicted of theft last year but was acquitted on appeal last Friday by Justice Chan Seng Onn.

The judge noted that the police report against her was made to prevent her return to Singapore to make a complaint against them for illegally deploying her to clean the house and office of Mr Liew's son Karl.

Yesterday, Mr Liew sought to explain why he lodged the report for theft, saying his family discovered some of their belongings in Ms Parti's boxes, and he "genuinely believed that if there were suspicions of wrongdoing, it is our civic duty to report the matter to the police and let the authorities investigate accordingly".

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) and CAG announced that former PUB chairman Tan Gee Paw, who has been a CAG board director since 2017, has been appointed its acting chairman.

CAG was corporatised in 2009 and has remained directly owned by the Government. Mr Liew has been its chairman since 2009.

The MOF said it had taken note of the observations of the High Court judge, and the further review that the AGC is undertaking.

 
 

Both MOF and CAG also acknowledged the significant contributions Mr Liew had made to the development of Changi Airport as a premier air hub. CAG said he played a pivotal role in the airport's corporatisation, which paved the way for it to operate more flexibly amid a competitive aviation environment.


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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 11, 2020, with the headline 'Liew Mun Leong steps down from posts'. Print Edition | Subscribe