The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) is once again placing its focus on former South African Airways (SAA) executive Yakhe Kwinana, who has been implicated in the first part of the State Capture Commission’s report.

The first part of the report zeroes in on the following: South African Airways (SAA) and its subsidiaries including SAA Technical and SAA Express, the Gupta-owned The New Age media entity, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) as well as public procurement.

The report states that Kwinana failed to give a satisfactory explanation as to why, as the chairperson of SAAT and a board member of SAA, it was lawful and appropriate for her to have received payments from an entity which did work with SAA Technical.

“The payments were, therefore, probably corrupt payments because they were made in exchange for decisions, in which Ms Kwinana was involved, that benefitted the entity that made the payments,” the report found.

KWINANA ALREADY NOT COOPERATING WITH SAICA

Now SAICA, an accountancy body which Yakhe Kwinana is a member of, says it will be investigating the allegations levelled against her. In addition, SAICA said it had previously sought answers from Kwinana after her disastrous testimony before the State Capture Commission in 2020, and is yet to hear from her.

“SAICA can confirm that it is already investigating the allegations against Ms. Kwinana and, as prescribed in SAICA’s revised by-laws which came into effect on 1 June 2020, SAICA has afforded her an opportunity to make representations to SAICA following previous media reports after she appeared in front of the Zondo Commission in November 2020. To date no such response has been received,” SAICA said in a statement.

SAICA CEO Freeman Nomvalo has vowed to bring down the hammer on all members, including Kwinana, who are found to have violated SAICA’s Code of Professional Conduct.

“The chartered accountancy profession is undergoing a period of profound reflection encompassing debates on how to maintain professional independence as evidenced by SAICA’s recent revisions to the Institute’s by-laws which include enhancements to the disciplinary process. What we can all agree on, is that adherence to the highest standards of ethical conduct, professional integrity and avoidance of conflict of interest must remain the bedrock of the accountancy profession. SAICA expects all its members to uphold these values in all professional circumstances”

SAICA CEO Freeman Nomvalo

Kwinana went viral for all the wrong reasons when she took the stand at the commission: She used an odd analogy about buying “fat cakes” to justify cancelling a R85 million tender awarded to LSG Sky Chefs and handing it to Air Chefs, the previous contractor, without tender. After her testimony, she became known as  one of the ‘worst witnesses’ in three-and-a-half years of the State Capture Inquiry.

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