Tuesday, April 9, 2019

HRD Fraud

HRDF which stands for Human Resource Development Fund did not deal in human resource development – far from it! 

What with all the shenanigans going on, it should rightly be called Human Resource Development Fraud.

During the BN reign, the powers that be were very much into making big bucks for themselves. The top executives and his three deputies had lavishly rewarded themselves with prodigious pay hikes and big bonuses before GE14 last year.

The Star reported today citing the documents it had sighted that the 2017 performance bonuses for the four were signed on February 28, 2018 by then-human resources minister Richard Riot Jaem (right), bypassing HRDF’s establishment and benefits committee (EBC), which rightfully determines remunerations and bonuses. 

The national newspaper added that neither the EBC nor HRDF’s board of directors were informed about the said matter, even though the HRDF Act only empowers the minister to give directives to the board and not bypass the board to give approvals. 

This is gross abuse and foul corruption! 

The Star highlighted the executive’s 2017 individual bonus of RM616,000 which was equivalent to a growth of 3,524 percent in three years! Compare this to his bonus in 2016 which was RM191,000, in 2015, RM60,000, and in 2014, RM17,000. 

Also, the executive’s salary was revised twice in 2017, from RM32,000 monthly to RM47,000 a month in March, followed by an increment to RM56,000 monthly after four months. 

Besides receiving a RM211,000 individual bonus each, his three deputies were also entitled to corporate bonuses. 

For 2017, regular HRDF employees were eligible to receive 1.75 months of corporate bonus and up to four months of individual bonus. 

According to the same news report, two of the deputies are still working with HRDF while the extravagantly paid executive and the third deputy have since left though it was unclear if they resigned or were sacked. 

Last November, Human Resources Minister M Kulasegaran (left) pointed his finger at high-ranking HRDF staff and accused them of misappropriating around RM100 million of the RM300 million in the fund. 

He also highlighted wrongdoings, such as abuse of duties, criminal breach of trust and acting beyond prescribed procedure without reporting to the board of directors. 

Therefore, he established a five-member independent governance oversight committee to review and probe the allegations. 

The police got involved and started their own investigations in January of this year and MACC joined in thereafter. 

It would seem that corruption is a way of life in the BN government.

Yesterday, I was at the Speakers’ Dream Toastmasters meeting – where I was the Table Topics Evaluator as well as a Speaker. 

I delivered my CC #2 titled "Hotel California" – my speech was referring to the last 2 lines of the song’s lyrics: “You can check-out any time you like; But you can never leave!"

Photos of Monday's meeting:

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