Financial Times

Business Ethics – my foot!

So now we know the calibre of our corporate leaders so much admired and honoured by the sacrosanct private sector that more often than not raised the middle finger to all and sundry until the CJ himself criticised both the public and the private sectors that has all but exposed what our sense of governance is all about.

Even corporate leaders who have been outspoken in the past are conspicuously quiet. All the big guns have gone quiet because that is the way these games are played out. And it is left to a lone newspaper, a courageous editor and a few voices in the wilderness to demand that justice or at least moral rectitude is practiced lest the law of the jungle permeates into the boardrooms of the several business houses that constitutes our inviolate private sector.

Old Vasu and Nihal Sri Amerasekera must be left wondering what more they must do, while a moribund public witnesses the malaise of a body populace that cannot bring its errant members to accountability. The President of this land must demonstrate the sanctity of his office by making his move and act against the Treasury Secretary. What the LMSL issue revealed is the tip of the iceberg and good men who remain silent are those who do the greatest damage.

Business ethics must not be left to Chamber seminars to whitewash now and then. They are indeed the biggest culprits. It is they who have let all down protecting and championing the causes of people who sustain their existence. One company CFO wrote to your paper to suggest that they have made all disclosures. What they did not say is what matters; what action was taken to mitigate losses? A chamber is not just an amalgam of business orientation; it should be an edifice of governance at its best. Let’s hope some hearts bleed for our nation and for our people whether they come from the private side or the public side of the road we traverse. Business ethics must transcend the commerce of our country.

Corporate Observer
(This letter was sent before the Treasury Secretary resigned)

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