January 12, 2018 / 2:17 PM / 6 months ago

South Africa's audit regulator says part of KPMG probe nearing completion

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - An investigation into the South African arm of KPMG is progressing “satisfactorily” while part of it is nearing completion, the boss of the nation’s audit regulator said on Friday.

The KPMG logo is seen at the company's head offices in Parktown, Johannesburg, South Africa, September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko/File Photo

KPMG sacked its South African leadership in September after it found work done for companies owned by the Gupta family, a trio of Indian-born businessmen with close ties to President Jacob Zuma, “fell considerably short” of its standards.

“The IRBA can confirm that one of the lines of investigation is nearing completion and will be tabled at the upcoming investigating committee, while others are progressing satisfactorily,” Bernard Agulhas, chief executive of the Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA), said in a statement.

Information requested from KPMG remains outstanding and the IRBA continues to engage with KPMG to obtain it to complete these investigations, he said.

He said most of the information required from the South African Revenue Service has been received.

Companies including the African arm of German insurer Munich Re and local ones such as Sasfin and Hulisani said last year they would drop KPMG as their auditor. The South African parliament has also said it would no longer use the company.

KPMG is one of several high-profile international companies facing questions about its work for the Indian-born Gupta brothers, who have been accused by an anti-graft watchdog of unduly influencing the awarding of government contracts.

The Guptas and Zuma deny wrongdoing and say they are victims of a politically motivated witch-hunt. The Guptas and their companies have not been charged with any crime.

Reporting by Nqobile Dludla; editing by Jason Neely

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