First Pacific chief executive Manuel Pangilinan has handed over the chairmanship of the conglomerate to majority shareholder Anthony Salim in a move that marks the end of a boardroom fight over the past 12 months. Mr Pangilinan said at the company's annual general meeting yesterday that he would relinquish the executive chairman post he had held since 1998. However, he said he would remain as managing director and chief executive. Mr Salim has become non-executive chairman. First Pacific said the move would implement a Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing recommendation that the two executive roles be separated in the interest of corporate governance. The move followed last week's resignation of two senior directors, chief operating officer Michael Healy and company secretary Ronald Brown. Last year, Mr Pangilinan thwarted First Pacific majority shareholder Salim Group's plans to sell stakes in Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) and Fort Bonifacio Global City, one of Manila's largest real-estate developments, to the Gokongwei family for US$616 million. First Pacific yesterday also appointed Robert Nicholson, outgoing special adviser to the PCCW board of directors, and Del Risario, a non-executive director of PLDT, to be independent non-executive directors. Benny Santoso, a Salim Group consultant, was appointed as non-executive director.