‘Golden handshakes’ for ousted KPMG South Africa executives

New KPMG South Africa CEO, Nhlamu Dlomu has told parliament’s standing committee on public accounts (Scopa) that the executives that ‘resigned’ from the group in the wake of its Gupta and SARS scandal were paid severance packages – and no further action has yet been taken against them.

Dlomu was in parliament on Thursday to answer questions on the auditing firm’s activities, and to give more insight of its involvement with the Gupta family, and its work on the so-called Sars rogue unit report.

The new chief executive told the parliamentary committee that she was personally greatly disappointed in the way KPMG had conducted itself with relation to the contracts, and said the group would be make “wide-sweeping” changes to ensure that there is not a repeat in the future.

However, she also stressed that while KPMG’s work was not up to quality standards in the cases highlighted by the media – speaking to the Gupta-linked companies and the SARS report – its internal investigations did not show that its issues were systemic.

“I have personally been greatly disappointed by how far we have fallen short of the standards we set ourselves,” Dlomu said. “I am determined that these mistakes do not happen again, which is why we have already made a number of changes. I am leading other reforms.”

Dlomu also threw her support behind and independent investigation launched by KPMG International, the details of which would be made public in the coming days.

The committee heard that no action has yet been taken against any of the executives or officials that have been implicated in the work done for the Guptas, nor the SARS report – this, despite eight top officials resigning from the company following an internal investigation.

These executives were also paid severance packages, which the DA’s Tim Brauteseth called ‘golden handshakes’ that would bring no comfort to the South African population demanding action, according to News24.

Dlomu said that action will be taken against implicated officials, and that any person found by the independent investigation to have failed to do their job would be held accountable.

Read: KPMG isn’t being honest, and is not doing enough: Wits

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‘Golden handshakes’ for ousted KPMG South Africa executives