BNM declines to comment on market talk of governor's resignation

KUALA LUMPUR (June 5): Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) declined to comment on strong market talk that governor Tan Sri Muhammad Ibrahim (pictured) has submitted his resignation.

Speculation has been rife in the market that Muhammad had tendered his resignation. However when contacted, a BNM spokesperson declined to comment on the matter.

"No comment at this point," the spokesperson said.

According to a Reuters report today, exit terms for Muhammad are being discussed and his resignation could be announced tomorrow, two people aware of the discussions said.

"Terms of his exit are being discussed and an announcement on his resignation could come out as early as tomorrow (Wednesday)," one of the people aware of the discussions told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

Another source close to the Prime Minister's office confirmed plans to announce the decision on Wednesday, Reuters reported.

Muhammad was appointed as the governor of the central bank on May 1, 2016 succeeding Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz. Prior to joining BNM, he helmed Danamodal Nasional Bhd as its managing director, and the Securities Commission Malaysia as its commissioner.

Last Thursday (May 31), the central bank reiterated that the land it had bought from the Ministry of Finance (MoF), which is contiguous to the BNM's Sasana Kijang complex, was agreed upon by both parties based on market price and supported by an independent private sector property valuation firm.

It was responding to a daily that reported the central bank is believed to have overpaid for the land it had bought from MoF when it forked out RM2.066 billion for the land.

On May 24, the MoF had confirmed that the former government, led by Barisan Nasional, bailed out troubled 1Malaysia Development Bhd through funds raised from BNM's purchase of the said piece of land for RM2 billion and part redemption of a RM3 billion preference share issue by Khazanah Nasional Bhd.—

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