SINGAPORE: Temasek-backed Pavilion Energy's CEO Seah Moon Ming will step down to focus on his role as chairman of train operator SMRT.
French national Frederic Bernaud, who is currently employed by Gazprom Marketing and Trading (GM&T) group in London, has been appointed the new CEO with effect from Feb 1, Pavilion Energy said in a news release on Tuesday (Dec 5).
“When he was appointed as chairman of SMRT Corp in July, Moon Ming had indicated his wish to devote more of his time and focus his attention to this new role, once a suitable successor had been identified," said Pavilion Energy chairman Tan Sri Mohd Hassan Marican.
"We were delighted that Frederic has agreed to join the company. The board is confident that Moon Ming leaves the group in a strong position, and the group will transit to new leadership well based on these solid foundations.”
SMRT has been plagued by a series of disruptions to train services that have hit commuter confidence, including a flooding incident along a stretch of the North-South Line tunnel.
In a separate media release, SMRT said it is "pleased" that when Mr Seah took on the chairmanship in July this year, he had planned to prioritise more time in the role.
"Under the guidance of Mr Seah and our board, SMRT remains focused on delivering key initiatives such as asset renewal efforts, while it continues its multi-year effort to strengthen management, operations and maintenance teams, and build robust engineering and operational capabilities for future needs," SMRT said.
"The board, CEO and management of SMRT welcome the opportunity to work even more closely with Mr Seah from Feb 1 2018."
Earlier on Tuesday, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan called for more support for the SMRT chairman, after saying that the flooding of the Bishan-Braddell MRT tunnel on Oct 7 was not a failure of engineering, but a "failure of organisational management at SMRT".
"SMRT is top priority for Seah Moon Ming, as national duty calls. Let us all help to render full and public support, not just for Seah Moon Ming, but also for his management, and the rank and file at SMRT," Mr Khaw said.