FIN24 / 30 JULY 2019 - 22.00 / KHULEKANI MAGUBANE
We're on top of Bosasa allegations – Empowerdex boss
Empowerdex - a B-BBEE consulting and verification firm which made headlines when it lost its accreditation - is not free to certify the broad-based black economic empowerment status of businesses after the suspension imposed on the company was lifted, the company’s executive chair Vuyo Jack told Fin24 on Tuesday.
Vuyo Jack (Twitter/Empowerdex)
However, he added, the business is working to get to the bottom of allegations that Bosasa succeeded in bribing one of its employees.
In April, the South African National Accreditation System said it had suspended Empowerdex's accreditation as a precautionary measure due to the company's failure to comply with some of the regulator's accreditation requirements.
Before that, Angelo Agrizzi – former Bosasa boss turned whistle-blower – testified at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture in March that Bosasa gave R40 000 to an employee of the B-BBEE verification company to "sort out the BEE ratings".
'Not of major consequence'
Jack confirmed to Fin24 that the accreditation regulator visited Empowerdex’s offices during the period of suspension.
"Yes, the suspension of Empowerdex was lifted early July 2019 after Sanas came for site visits on our various offices affected by the suspension," said Jack.
Jack said the non-compliance which led to the suspension was not of major consequence and that Empowerdex had committed to addressing it.
"After the evaluation there were some minor non-conformances which were identified by Sanas but were not material enough to uphold the suspension. What Sanas highlighted was that we needed to beef up our internal audit capacity to minimise potential and future risks," Jack said.
Regarding the bribery allegations, Jack said: "The forensic audit we have initiated to look at the bribery allegations against a former employee of Empowerdex is at an advanced stage. Once it is completed we shall be guided by the outcome to take the matter to the relevant authorities."
Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER