jeudi, 24 mai 2018
 

South Africa’s Gupta Corruption Scandal

Peter Hain, a former Labour cabinet minister and veteran anti-apartheid campaigner, told the House of Lords “It should be a matter of shame that companies headquartered here in the UK have aided and abetted money laundering, corruption and state capture in South Africa – including Bell Pottinger, KPMG, McKinsey, SAP, and banks such as HSBC, Standard Chartered and Baroda – in total betrayal of Nelson Mandela’s legacy. I have just referred to the Solicitors Regulation Authority Hogan Lovells, the international law firm headquartered here in London, for enabling a corrupt money launderer to be returned to his post as second-in-command of the critically important South African Revenue Service (SARS).”

Hain has reported Hogan Lovells to the UK’s Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) over concerns that the firm produced a “fatally flawed whitewash” report into claims of money laundering at the South African tax agency. Hogan Lovells, a global law firm with more than 2,500 lawyers. Hain said the flawed report made the firm “complicit in undermining South Africa’s once-revered tax-collection agency, and thereby effectively underpinning President Jacob Zuma and his business associates, the Gupta brothers, and others, in perverting South Africa’s democracy, damaging its economy and robbing its taxpayers”.

Hain’s claims against Hogan Lovells relate to the firm’s investigation into allegations of corruption against the SARS deputy commissioner, Jonas Makwakwa, who, along with his lover, was alleged to have siphoned off about R1.7m (£100,000). Makwakwa denies any wrongdoing.

“The law firm issued an incomplete, fatally flawed whitewash of a report, which ultimately cleared Makwakwa, despite reams of evidence to the contrary,” Hain said. “Most damning of all, Hogan Lovells failed to include crucial evidence from the PwC report and the status of the Hawks [economic crime police] investigation in their own report.” Hain said Hogan Lovell’s report led to the reappointment of Makwakwa. He accused him and his boss, the SARS commissioner, Tom Moyane, of continuing “their looting and dirty work of robbing taxpayers”.

South African politicians and campaigners accuse the billionaire Gupta brothers of exploiting their close friendship with Zuma to take control of some government affairs and win big state contracts for their family businesses. The public relations firm Bell Pottinger which collapsed into bankruptcy last year following revelations that it sought to stir up racial tension in the country on behalf of the Guptas.

Source from http://socialistbanner.blogspot.fr

 
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