Man who returned $88,000 turns down award

Man who returned $88,000 turns down award

After he returned more than $88,000 that was mistakenly transferred to his bank account, Mr Jon Lim received only a brief acknowledgement from Smith & Nephew which made the error.

But the 31-year-old's honesty has received recognition from his employer, Great Eastern Financial Advisers (Gefa).

A CEO Honour Award was presented to him on Monday after his story appeared on the front page of The New Paper last Friday.

Mr Lim had joined Gefa as a financial adviser in January.

The company will also be making a donation of $3,000 to the Singapore Kindness Movement (SKM) which praised Mr Lim for his act.

Gefa chief executive officer Jesslyn Tan was surprised to see Mr Lim's story in TNP: "I saw his photo and I thought, 'That's one of my reps.'

"We want to encourage more such acts of integrity, especially since we manage the funds of clients who trust us with their money."

After discussions with the management, the company asked Mr Lim how he would like his good deed to be recognised.

He turned down a reward and suggested a donation be made to SKM, as he was honoured that they had backed up his actions.

He said: "They are a non-profit organisation with many programmes to promote graciousness in society and I really believe in their values.

"I think integrity is doing the right thing without anyone looking."

Friends sent him over 20 text messages saying how they were proud of him, with some messages coming in even before he woke up last Friday morning.

A secondary school friend he had not met for more than 10 years shared the article on Facebook, with the description: "Steady ah, Jon Lim!"


SKM chairman William Wan felt that Smith & Nephew could have been embarrassed about the error.

He said: "It's not a crime to make a mistake, we all do. But the senior management should have sent Mr Lim a thank you e-mail."

Even though Mr Lim did not expect anything in return, Dr Wan said it would still be encouraging for such kind acts to be recognised.

Grateful for Gefa's donation, Dr Wan said: "I think it is important for financial institutions to promote the value of integrity. Society cannot just be built on commercial interests alone."

This article was first published on April 30, 2015.
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