Ex-Hyflux CEO charged with violations of Securities and Futures Act

Hyflux founder and former chief executive Olivia Lum Ooi Lin (right), former chief financial officer Cho Wee Peng and four former board members were on Thursday charged with violations of the Securities and Futures Act.

In a joint statement, the authorities said the six were charged over "Hyflux's intentional failure to disclose information relating to the Tuaspring Integrated Water and Power Project".

Lum, 61, was also charged with an offence under the Companies Act for her failure in ensuring Hyflux's compliance with accounting standards. She is out on agency bail of $100,000.

The former Hyflux independent directors charged for disclosure-related offences were Teo Kiang Kok, Christopher Murugasu, Gay Chee Cheong and Rajsekar Kuppuswami Mitta.

The charges follow a joint probe in June 2020 by the Commercial Affairs Department, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority.

The agencies initiated the probe after a review of Hyflux's compliance with accounting and auditing standards as well as disclosure rules. The probe looked at whether there were lapses in Hyflux's disclosures concerning the Tuaspring plant, and non-compliance with accounting standards between 2011 and 2018.

Hyflux was placed under judicial management in November 2020 and the High Court in July 2021 approved its winding up, after the company failed to secure a white knight while it was under a debt moratorium for almost two years.

The company's liquidation likely left about 34,000 investors of perpetual securities and preference shares - who had sunk in a combined $900 million - with nothing.

The Straits Times

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