More security chaos for G4S in face of investor and activist fury

More than a fifth of shareholders revolt over pay awards at annual meeting

The security company G4S could not even keep control of its own annual meeting on Thursday as the group's management – infamous for its mishandling of the London Olympics contract – was assailed by protesters from the floor and a large number of shareholders angry at executive pay.

More than one in five – 21 per cent – of shareholders voted against the group's executive pay awards, including £1.18m for the departed chief executive Nick Buckles, £746,000 for Trevor Dighton and £920,000 for Grahame Gibson.

However, thanks to the continued support of major shareholders including Invesco Perpetual's fund manager Neil Woodford, whose income fund owns an estimated 15 per cent of the company, the executives managed to secure their deal.

But G4S executives may have been left even more red-faced by a disruptive protest which broke out during the AGM regarding Jimmy Mubenga, an Angolan man who died while being deported by G4S guards.

G4S's chairman, John Connolly, was some five minutes into his address when a group of 10 protesters reacted to a very loud klaxon by jumping up from their seats and rushing to the front of the room of shareholders. They could be heard shouting "Jimmy Mubenga" and calling for justice for his death. The group was removed from the room in less than a minute.

Mr Mubenga, 46, became ill on a British Airways plane preparing to leave Heathrow airport after he was restrained by the guards Terence Hughes, Stuart Tribelnig and Colin Kaler, in October 2010. He later died in hospital, leaving behind his widow, Adrienne Makenda Kambana, and five children. In July last year, it was decided that no action would be taken against G4S staff over the death.

Speaking after the AGM, Mr Connolly said of the protesters : "Their behaviour wasn't terrible. They made their point and allowed themselves to be taken out of the room. They didn't overdo it."

The new chief executive, Ashley Almanza, said he was "entirely comfortable facing the shareholders. One of the virtues of living in a democracy is that people are able to express their views. I think it's absolutely fine."

But the trouble did not end there. As well as pro-Palestinian protesters on the sidelines demonstrating against the group's links with Israel, the record of Mr Buckles was lambasted by shareholders, with one questioner from the floor saying he had failed to defend the company in front of MPs over the bungled Olympic contract and accusing him of being "stupid" for having agreed to a beefed-up security provision deal for the London Games so late in the day.

At the time, the company faced a wave of public and parliamentary anger as it admitted that it could not supply the agreed number of staff to manage the games.

Mr Buckles announced last month that he would be quitting the group after it issued a profits warning. His estimated £1.2m payoff drew angry reactions from MPs, who remembered his performance in front of the Home Affairs Select Committee, when answering for the Olympics debacle. The chairman of the committee, Keith Vaz, said it must not be mistaken for a reward for "spectacular failure".

The Olympics contract, which ultimately cost G4S £88m, saw thousands of troops and police drafted in to guard the Games at the last minute after the company found it could not recruit staff quick enough. Mr Buckles admitted it was a "humiliating shambles". He has been replaced by Mr Almanza, who joined the company just three weeks ago as chief financial officer from BG Group.

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Sport
Luis Suarez looks towards the crowd during the 2-1 victory over England
sport
Life and Style
Cheesecake frozen yoghurt by Constance and Mathilde Lorenzi
food + drinkThink outside the cool box for this summer’s frozen treats
News
John Barrowman kisses his male “bride” at a mock Gretna Green during the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony
peopleBarrowman's opening ceremony message to Commonwealth countries where he would be sent to prison for being gay
Sport
Sir Bradley Wiggins removes his silver medal after the podium ceremony for the men’s 4,000m team pursuit in Glasgow yesterday
Commonwealth games Disappointment for Sir Bradley in team pursuit final as England are forced to settle for silver
Sport
Alistair Brownlee (right) celebrates with his gold medal after winning the men’s triathlon alongside brother Jonny (left), who got silver
England's Jodie Stimpson won the women’s triathlon in the morning
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Trade Desk Specialist (Linux, Windows, FIX, Finance, Networks)

£60000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Trade Desk Specialist (Linux, Windows, FIX...

Associate CXL Consultant

£40000 - £60000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: CXL, Triple Po...

Project Manager - ETRM/CTRM

£70000 - £90000 per annum + Job Satisfaction: Harrington Starr: Project Manage...

C#.NET Developer

£300 - £350 per day: Harrington Starr: C#.NET Developer C#, WPF,BLL,MVVM, SOA...

Day In a Page

Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform