Former Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong’s son, Goh Jin Hian, resigned as New Silkroutes Group’s chairman a mere two weeks after taking on the role amid a police probe into the mainboard-listed investment holding firm.
The police probe against NSG is unrelated to the lawsuit against Dr Goh for alleged breaches of his director’s duties at troubled bunker supplier firm Inter-Pacific Petroleum.
The Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) launched an investigation against NSG last month over a possible securities breach. NSG said that it understands that the alleged offence is false trading and market rigging pursuant to Section 197 of the Securities and Futures Act in view of past share buy-backs and acquisitions of shares.
Both Dr Goh, who was NSG’s chief executive officer and executive director until he became chairman on 1 Oct, as well as NSG finance director William Teo were involved in the CAD investigation. NSG disclosed that the passports of both men were impounded by the CAD although neither person was arrested or charged.
Just two weeks ago, NSG said that it had no plans to suspend Dr Goh and Mr Teo from their duties and made special mention of Dr Goh’s contributions to the company. Dr Goh’s transition from company CEO and chairman also took place as planned despite the probe.
In Singapore Exchange filings made late on Thursday night (15 Oct), NSG revealed that both Dr Goh and Mr Teo have resigned from their posts with immediate effect. It said that Dr Goh resigned “to devote more time to his personal affairs” while Mr Teo quit “to focus on personal matters and to pursue other interests”.
Earlier on Thursday, the firm announced that its auditor Deloitte & Touche had issued a disclaimer of opinion on the financial statements of the group for the financial year that ended 30 June.
On 27 Aug, the firm reported that it has ended the fourth quarter on 30 June with a net loss of US$2.28 million compared to a profit of US$227,000 recorded in the same quarter a year ago. It reported a full-year loss of US$1.95 million from a previous loss of US$684,000.