SINGAPORE: The president of the Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF), Dr Robert Yap, has resigned after the organisation said it was informed of a “governance procedural lapse” during a routine internal review.

Dr Yap led SNEF for 10 years. He has also stepped down as a member of the council, the policy-making body of the federation.

After the lapse was discovered, its council engaged an external consultant to conduct a thorough review of its internal processes, SNEF said in a media statement on Tuesday (Jun 11).

“The independent review is currently underway,” it added.

“At this point, the council is not aware of any financial implications arising from this lapse.”

SNEF represents the interests of businesses in Singapore. It says it has a membership of over 3,300 companies with a combined workforce of more than 800,000.

Its statement did not specify the reasons behind Dr Yap’s resignation. It also did not respond to CNA’s questions about the nature of the governance lapse.

SNEF said, however, that the resignation was agreed upon between Dr Yap and the council and was effective immediately.

The council does not believe that a police report is warranted at this point, it added.

Dr Yap’s duties will be undertaken by council members until the annual general meeting when the new council will be elected by members.

The new council members will subsequently vote for the office bearers, including the president, and this is scheduled to take place later this year, added SNEF.

“The council takes seriously the federation’s responsibility in upholding governance ideals expected by all our stakeholders and will be directly overseeing this independent review,” the federation said in its media statement.

Dr Yap is the executive chairman of supply chain and logistics company YCH Group, and joined the SNEF council in June 2013 before becoming its president in September the following year.

He is also the president of the ASEAN Confederation of Employers, and the Singapore chair of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council and Malaysia-Singapore Business Council.

SNEF said it is unable to comment further as the independent review is underway.

It released a statement from Dr Yap, who said: “I thank the SNEF council, SNEF members and tripartite stakeholders for their years of support. I have worked hard to advance the interests of my members and tripartism in Singapore. It is never easy but I have done what I can. It is also time to hand over the reins of leadership.

“I understand the council’s decision to engage an external consultant to pursue an independent review. It is always good to review governance procedures so that organisations can continue to improve and learn from any organisational weaknesses.” 


The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said it had been informed by SNEF of Dr Yap’s resignation and that the union is conducting a review of its internal processes. 

“While there is no indication of any financial implications arising from this lapse thus far, MOM has requested SNEF to provide us with an update on the outcome of their review and to share key documentation with MOM as soon as it is completed,” it added.

MOM said it will decide on its next course of action after the review. 

“There will be no change to the tripartite process. MOM will continue to work with SNEF as our tripartite partner to advance our economic and social goals for Singapore,” the ministry added.

The National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) also said it had been notified that Dr Yap is stepping down from his roles at SNEF.

It noted that, under Dr Yap, SNEF had contributed to numerous tripartite councils and workgroups, advocating the interest of businesses in improving the lives and livelihoods of their workers.

NTUC said it was “appreciative” of his contributions to the labour movement.

“NTUC will continue to uphold tripartism with SNEF and MOM. Tripartism has been and continues to be one of the cornerstones of Singapore’s success,” it added.


Leave A Reply

© 2024 The News Singapore. All Rights Reserved.