In sexual harassment spotlight, BFM says full and unfettered probe underway

Justin Ong
The anonymous allegation of widespread sexual harassment at BFM was sent out to news outlet on November 29 and was leaked online shortly after. — Picture via Facebook

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 7 — Business radio station BFM reiterated today that a fully independent and open investigation into anonymous claims of workplace sexual harassment was ongoing.

Responding to the call for the station to ensure the investigation was complete and credible, BFM founder Malik Ali again told employees and the public that the company viewed such allegations seriously and was handling these with urgency.

BFM has already convened an independent committee to examine the allegations, with Malik explaining that the panel included lawyers experienced in handling sexual harassment issues.

“This investigating committee is entirely independent of the BFM management team and haMs been given a full mandate to investigate all of the allegations contained in the anonymous letter. It reports directly to a board panel consisting of independent non-executive directors of BFM.

“Staff at BFM have been given direct access to the investigating committee without any need to go through any management team members or supervisors,” he said in a statement today.

Malik said BFM was awaiting the outcome of the investigation so that it could improve its social and reporting systems to ensure that employees are given the needed support structures.

He added that the station understood the public’s concern over the allegations and demands for accountability.

“We take all allegations made by members of staff with the utmost seriousness. We strive to create a workplace where every member of staff, regardless of their gender, feels safe and empowered,” he said.

The anonymous allegation was sent out to news outlet on November 29 and was leaked online shortly after.

In it, the writer alleged widespread sexual harassment at BFM as well as cover-up by the management on behalf of favoured staff members.

When announcing the independent probe previously, Malik also said those implicated in the letter have taken a leave of absence pending the investigation.

A group of former guests on the station have urged BFM to ensure that its investigation was open and transparent to ensure its credibility while women’s groups have also called for the sexual assault allegation to be investigated by law enforcement.

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