Obama demanded GM CEO resign
Agence France-Presse
Published: Sunday March 29, 2009

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GM CEO Rick Wagoner will be resigning at President Barack Obama's behest, US media reported Sunday just hours before Obama was to unveil an auto industry rescue package.

"The Obama administration asked Rick Wagoner, the chairman and CEO of General Motors, to step down and he agreed," reported citing an unnamed White House official said. No reason was immediately given.

Meanwhile "Obama and other administration officials have said they would demand deeper restructuring from General Motors and Chrysler before they would get any more government loans," The Wall Street Journal reported.

Obama unveils his plan Monday for the sector which has called for billions more in government aid to weather the economic storm.

But the US president warned earlier the automakers still needed to do more if they are to qualify for further government bailout funds.

"They're not there yet," Obama told CBS television.

"We think we can have a successful US auto industry. But it's got to be one that's realistically designed to weather this storm and to emerge -- at the other end -- much more lean, mean and competitive than it currently is."

Obama's auto task force has been working to solve the woes of US automakers which have been pushed to the brink of bankruptcy in the economic recession amid a global downturn in car sales.

Two of the firms, General Motors and Chrysler, have asked for another 21.6 billion dollars in US aid on top of the 17.4 billion in emergency loans approved in December as they struggle to survive.

Ford, the other member of Detroit's Big Three, has said it has enough cash to survive the downturn without government aid.

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