The request was made by GM's chairman, Ed Withacre, at an appearance at the Texas Lutheran University. He took advantage of the opportunity to ask for the aforementioned slack on execs' pay, as well as defending the decision of retaining Opel (whose new leader, Nick Reilly, has just been appointed)..
"It's been a confusing decision, but I don't think it was handled badly," Whitacre was quoted as saying by Autonews. "The circumstances changed from the time this started. The financial part of the business got better. Conditions have changed."
With the financial situation back on track, Withacre says GM now knows what to do and understands why they should pay back the US government.
"Mr. Henderson and his team have the support of the board. They understand -- we all understand - what we have to do."
Still, this may not be done so soon, as the chairman believes that making an initial public offering at this time (IPO) is not so useful as Henderson and other GM execs believe. The chairman asks for a more cautious approach when talking about listing the manufacturer prior before mid-2010.