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Ex-RSAF brigadier-general is appointed chief operating officer of SBS Transit

The Independent logo The Independent 23/4/2019 Jewel Stolarchuk
a man wearing a hat and smiling at the camera © Mr Cheng Siak Kian (Photo: RSAF FB)

ComfortDelGro Corp subsidiary, SBS Transit, has appointed ex-Republic of Singapore Air Force brigadier-general and commander Cheng Siak Kian to be its new chief operating officer (COO).

Cheng, 49, who presently serves as chief executive of ComfortDelGro’s business in New South Wales, Australia, will assume his post as COO of SBS Transit on 1 July.

The last COO of SBS Transit was from the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF). Former lieutenant-colonel Gan Juay Kiat was made COO of SBS Transit in 2007. In 2009, he became executive director of SBS Transit and in 2010, he was promoted as CEO.

On 28 Dec 2018, Gan tendered his resignation over “lapses in conduct” and “personal reasons”. That same day, a video supposedly surfaced on social media showing the 61-year-old former SAF Overseas Scholar and President’s Scholar with several women with whom he allegedly had extra-marital affairs.

It was reported that Gan, who is married with grown children, had extramarital affairs with his subordinates. ComfortDelGro group CEO Yang Ban Seng has been running SBS Transit since Gan’s resignation.

Netizens responding to Cheng’s new appointment said that they were not surprised that an ex-RSAF personnel has been chosen to lead the transport operator. Almost exactly a year ago, SBS Transit’s competitor SMRT announced that ex-Chief of Defence Force Neo Kian Hong would be its new CEO.

Neo’s appointment as SMRT CEO came after SMRT supposedly conducted a “global search” for a new leader. They finally settled on another military man to replace outgoing CEO Desmond Kuek, who was also an ex-Chief of Defence Force.

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