Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Power of Power

When we talk of managerial power, I am reminded of the situation in Malaysia.
It is not just economic power but also political power. This involves state-owned enterprises especially.
In this country, we call them government-link companies (GLCs) or government-linked investment companies (GLICs).
Wan Saiful Wan Jan of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs writing in The Star on August 29, 2017 had defined GLCs as simply companies owned by GLICs, which in turn are used by the Government to manage government investments. 
Using data up to 2013, we know that Government involvement in the economy is massive.
At least 35 public-listed companies constituting an estimated 42% of the total market capitalization of all listed companies in 2013. Through these 35 GLCs, ultimately, the government has connections with more than 68,000 other companies.
And in case you didn’t know, the mother of all entities is MOF Inc. – where already there is a heavy concentration of economic and political power residing in the office of the Prime Minister, and by virtue of him also being the Finance Minister – he too controls MOF Inc.
We all know too well that there is a painful issue here with regard to corporate governance because power rests with one person. And you know who he is!!!
1MDB became a financial farce precisely because of this power convergence. Of course in Malaysia, you can get away with it.
Money greases many palms. Money can even move mountains. Money is also power.
“Power tends to corrupt,” said Lord Acton, the 19th-century British historian. “Absolute power corrupts absolutely”.
This country is sadly corrupt.
My admission: I cannot lie. LOL, I love money too.

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