Friday, 4 Dec 2020

NKF chairman Koh Poh Tiong to step down, pass on baton to Singtel CEO Arthur Lang

SINGAPORE – National Kidney Foundation (NKF) chairman Koh Poh Tiong will step down on Oct 31, after holding the position for eight years.

Mr Koh will be succeeded by Mr Arthur Lang, the chief executive of Singtel’s International Group who joined the foundation as a board director in 2015.

In announcing Mr Koh’s relinquishing of the post, the foundation highlighted his “remarkable contribution in shaping and fortifying the policies of corporate governance, transparency and accountability”, and “strong conviction that no one should be denied access to dialysis in Singapore due to their financial limitations”.

Under Mr Koh’s leadership, NKF has invested in building infrastructure and capacity, increasing the number of community-based dialysis centres from 25 in 2012 to 38 now. Two more are in the pipeline to provide services for kidney patients in need close to their homes. NKF currently serves over 4,800 kidney patients and beneficiaries.

Mr Koh also prioritised quality care to meet patients’ multiple needs during his term. The foundation introduced nocturnal dialysis to benefit patients who require longer hours of dialysis for better treatment outcomes. This treatment is done over seven to eight hours as the patient sleeps, instead of the usual four hours.

In 2014, NKF established a $10-million Education and Prevention Fund to invest in ways and means in strengthening kidney disease prevention.

Mr Koh, the former chief executive of Fraser & Neave, took over the chairmanship from Mr Gerard Ee in 2012. Mr Ee was appointed to the role by the Ministry of Health in 2005 after the lavish lifestyles of its then CEO T. T. Durai and three other board members were exposed by The Straits Times.

Said Mr Koh: I am pleased that my successor Mr Arthur Lang, has agreed to let me pass the baton to him. I have every confidence that, with his financial acumen, depth of knowledge in corporate governance and risk management, he will help preserve NKF’s strong fundamentals and propel it to greater heights to benefit our kidney patients.”

Having worked in the financial and real estate sectors prior to joining Singtel, Mr Lang previously served as a board member of the Land Transport Authority and currently sits on the Advisory Boards of Singapore Management University’s Lee Kong Chian School of Business and The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund.

Noting the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on society, Mr Lang said it was critical that institutions like NKF continue to serve with the right attitude and focus, inspiring the community to support its patients.

“Our patients’ needs are many and the NKF will continue to do its utmost to extend care to all who need it. I’m deeply privileged to take on this role and to continue to serve with my fellow Board members as well as the volunteers and team at NKF,” he said.

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