Group Lotus boss Dany Bahar was suspended from his post today while an investigation is carried out into a complaint about his conduct.

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A statement from Lotus’ Malaysian parent company DRB Hicom said the move against the Lotus boss was taken following an operational review.

Staff at Hethel were also told about the development today, but the company gave no further details surrounding the complaint.

Today’s statement said: “As a result of a number of media inquiries, Group Lotus plc (“Lotus”) can today confirm that, following an operational review, chief executive Dany Bahar has been temporarily suspended from his role to facilitate an investigation into a complaint about his conduct made by Lotus’ penultimate parent company, DRB-HICOM Berhad.”

A spokesman for DRB-HICOM Berhad, which bought Lotus’ parent company Proton in January, said: “The penultimate holding company would like to stress it is business as usual at Lotus. We fully support the company and will continue to support Lotus in its business endeavours and development.”

In Mr Bahar’s absence, representatives of Lotus’ parent companies Dato’ Lukman Ibrahim, Mr Mohd Khalid Yusof and Mr Aslam Farikullah have been authorised by Group Lotus’ board to handle and conduct the day to day management and affairs of the Lotus Group. The statement added: “They will be assisted by Mr Rusman Zaihan. They have been authorised to take up these duties during the suspension period.”

Lotus’ future has been up in the air following the sale of Proton, amid rumours that the company could be sold to the Chinese sparking a campaign locally to keep the company in Norfolk.

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