Frankly Speaking: Uncertainty looms

This article first appeared in The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on October 22, 2018 - October 28, 2018.
-A +A

Last Friday, shares of MyEG Services Bhd and Datasonic Group Bhd tanked after news broke that the charge sheets against former deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi named the two companies as being involved in undesirable practices.

MyEG was the second most active counter traded with 169.89 million shares changing hands and shed almost 25%, or 37 sen, to RM1.13. Datasonic, meanwhile, was the third most active, slipping a tad more than 30%, or 21 sen, to close at 48.5 sen, with 143.29 million shares traded.

Most actively traded was Datasonic’s competitor Iris Corp Bhd, which inched up three sen, or 20.69%, to 17.5 sen on the back of 188.72 million shares changing hands.

However, MyEG clarified in an announcement to the local bourse that it had received a letter from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission confirming that the company and board of directors were not under investigation and are not a party to the investigation leading to the charges against Zahid. Similarly, Datasonic clarified that neither the company nor any of its directors had made any payment to Zahid.

While such clarifications are standard, investors hate uncertainty and must be wondering if there could be trouble ahead.

It is worth nothing that a Datasonic director was named in one of the charge sheets allegedly bribing Zahid, supposedly to facilitate the home ministry to award it a five-year contract to supply 12.5 million chips to be placed into Malaysian passports.

Does this mean the director will be investigated too? And shouldn’t the alleged “giver” also be charged? While these are unknowns and Zahid remains innocent until proven guilty, the uncertainty will hang over Datasonic.

Meanwhile, should the said director excuse himself from day-to-day management?

Save by subscribing to us for your print and/or digital copy.

P/S: The Edge is also available on Apple's AppStore and Androids' Google Play.