• CMS had in April 2021 reported to authorities a complaint pertaining to allegations of conflict of interest involving Abu Bekir and Vink received through its whistleblower channel.

KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 31): Cahya Mata Sarawak Bhd (CMS) said authorities’ investigation into the alleged conflict of interest involving its deputy group chairman Datuk Seri Mahmud Abu Bekir Taib and former chief information officer Karl Vink @ Khalid Abdullah has closed and been classified as “no further action (NFA)”.

In a bourse filing on Monday, the group said it was informed of this via a letter from the Companies Commission Malaysia dated Oct 4.

Abu Bekir is the son of Sarawak Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud.

CMS had in April 2021 reported to authorities a complaint pertaining to allegations of conflict of interest involving Abu Bekir and Vink received through its whistleblower channel.

Following that, Abu Bekir voluntarily took a leave of absence from his position in the group to enable authorities to carry out a full and transparent investigation.

However, after the group’s internal investigation concluded that the allegation involving Abu Bekir and Vink was “without basis”, Abu Bekir’s leave of absence was cancelled following the board’s request for him to stay on.

Instead, CMS later suspended its then-group chief financial officer (CFO) Syed Hizam Alsagoff for 30 days to facilitate investigations into allegations of possible financial mismanagement in relation to its investments and operations.

KPMG, the independent consultant appointed to take up the investigation, in November 2021 highlighted several key findings, including the existence of gaps in the contract management processes, which contributed to an undisclosed project’s losses.

Syed Hizam’s contract as group CFO lapsed in end-August 2021. Mukhnizam Mahmud was appointed in March 2022 to serve as the acting CFO.

Taib’s daughters, Jamilah Hamidah Taib and Datuk Hajjah Hanifah Hajjar Taib-Alsree, control a 12.55% stake in CMS through Majaharta Sdn Bhd. A 10.33% stake is in the name of their late mother Puan Sri Laila Taib, and Taib’s sons have individual shareholdings in the company — with Abu Bekir holding a 0.5% stake.

Collectively, the Taib family has an equity interest of just below 33% in the group.

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