Letter in Straits Times Forum
I REFER to the article last Thursday, 'Lehman-linked investors to get news in Jan', which reported that almost 5,000 formal complaints had been filed and that the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) was satisfied that all 10 institutions involved were reviewing complaints based on principles of fairness.
I appeal to MAS to consider taking over the handling of complaints. There are already a large number of formal complaints as the report stated. Furthermore, the final number may be higher because non-Lehman-linked complaints were not part of the 5,000 stated and many other complaints may be expected. Hence, MAS may want to take a more cautious approach when a large number of ordinary citizens are affected.
Secondly, the complaint handling process should be undertaken not only to determine fairness but also the integrity of the financial institution.
Thirdly, the process should be handled directly by an independent party. Having such a party to oversee the complaint-handling process may not be sufficient.
It should be handled by an independent party from the start. This may involve a significant investment in resources by MAS.
It is also true that MAS is not in a position to guarantee the profitability of financial products.
But, it is MAS which Singaporeans trust most to uphold the integrity of a financial institution.
Leong Kok Ho
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