By Chris Maskilone
KOTA KINABALU: A storm is brewing at the Institute for Development Studies (IDS) Sabah after its Board of Directors removed Datuk Dr Johan Ariffin Samad as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) last week.
A well placed source told Sabah News Today that a motion to confirm Dr Johan’s appointment was moved during the IDS board meeting chaired by Tan Sri Simon Sipaun on May 29.
The motion, however, was rejected after a secret ballot among the 11 IDS Board of Directors except one who was absent.
Dr Johan who came to IDS on Dec 1 last year was still under a six-month probation that was supposed to end on May 31, according to the source.
In an apparent retaliation, the source said a ‘letter’ had surfaced through the Whatsapp application written under the name of a board member who claimed that Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal had given a directive for Dr Johan to stay as CEO of IDS.
In the ‘letter’, which Sabah News Today was a privy to, the director claimed he and another board member had accompanied Dr Johan to see the Chief Minister on Monday.
He said during their meeting Dr Johan had told the Chief Minister that Sipaun had accused him of mismanagement via a letter on Mar 18 that was copied to the board members.
The board member said Dr Johan told the Chief Minister he was never given the chance by the IDS Chairman to explain and instead the matter was directly brought up to the board and pronounced him guilty.
The source said Sipaun is prepared to see the Chief Minister to give his explanation and that he maintained it was the decision of the Board of Directors.
Efforts to contact Sipaun and Dr Johan for more information are still on going.
IDS is an autonomous research body assisting the Sabah State Government to tap ideas and opinions, and also to analyse public policy proposals before they are implemented.-SabahNewsToday