Skip to main content

To: Chairpersons of the Internal Audit Committee and Council at Wits University

Wits University, fire KPMG now

Wits has announced they won't renew KPMGs contract, however we are yet to see them amend internal processes

We, the undersigned, call on the independent auditing committee of Wits University to immediately drop KPMG as the university’s auditor, and to put in place a policy of ethical procurement.

Why is this important?

Auditing firm KPMG is in the news, after withdrawing their report into the so-called ‘rogue unit’ of SARS [1]. The allegations made in the report led to the removal of senior SARS investigators who were investigating money laundering and tax evasion. KPMG also reportedly helped divert R30 million tax payers’ money meant for a Free State government empowerment project to fund a wedding [2].

Wits University describes itself as an institution with a “commitment to social justice”, yet continues to do business with firm that enabled theft from the public- crimes which divert money from much needed services. As a publicly funded institution itself, Wits University knows the damage caused by this.

The Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA) a body tasked with protecting the public, has launched an investigation into KPMG. But the harshest sanction the IRBA can impose is a R200 000 fine [3], an amount that is a slap on the wrist considering the cost of the damage caused by the auditing firm. While 6 senior executives, its CEO and chair have resigned, this is not enough.

Already companies like Sygnia have dumped the auditing firm [4], let us demand that Wits University joins them. KPMG shouldn’t be profiting from any public institution.

[1] SARS vows to take legal action against KPMG over withdrawal of 'rogue unit' report, Kyle Cowan for TimesLive. 18 September 2017.
[2] #GuptaLeaks: The Dubai Laundromat - How millions from dairy paid for Sun City wedding, amaBhungane and Scorpio. 30 June 2017.
[3] Audit watchdog sharpens its fangs, Lisa Steyn for Mail&Guardian. 11 Aug 2017.
[4] Sygnia axes KPMG over Gupta links, Business Day. 28 July 2017.



2018-02-07 14:41:17 +0200

Petition is successful with 86 signatures

2017-09-21 21:58:06 +0200

50 signatures reached

2017-09-21 16:34:18 +0200

25 signatures reached

2017-09-21 15:39:15 +0200

10 signatures reached