Lawyers sit in the front row during the first day of the Ntsebeza Inquiry in Sandton, Johannesburg, into the SAICA members who were KPMG employees that worked on accounts linked to the Guptas as well as the SARS rogue units. Picture: ALAISTER RUSSELL/ SUNDAY TIMES
Lawyers sit in the front row during the first day of the Ntsebeza Inquiry in Sandton, Johannesburg, into the SAICA members who were KPMG employees that worked on accounts linked to the Guptas as well as the SARS rogue units. Picture: ALAISTER RUSSELL/ SUNDAY TIMES

The CEO of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (Saica), Terence Nombembe, has called on the Ntsebeza inquiry to leave no stone unturned as it investigates the alleged misconduct of its members who worked for professional services firm KPMG.

Saica members are being investigated for alleged involvement in the Gupta accounts and the compilation of the report into the South African Revenue Service’s (SARS’s) so-called "rogue unit".

Nombembe said the events surrounding the work done by KPMG for the controversial family resulted in a decline in trust, both by the markets and individuals, in the chartered accountancy profession.

Nombembe was speaking at the opening of the public hearings of the inquiry, which was set up to investigate Saica members employed by KPMG, whose conduct may have contravened the code of professional conduct. "We urge panel to leave no stone unturned," he said.

According to Nombembe, at the conclusion of the inquiry, Saica will take disciplinary action against any of its members who are found to have acted unethically.

Two evidence leaders, advocate Pule Seleka SC and advocate Amaechi Olua, have been appointed to lead the inquiry.

On Monday, Seleka said the inquiry would look at work done for the Guptas from January 2013 to September 2017.

KPMG found itself embroiled in allegations of state capture involving the Gupta family.

The Hawks swooped on the family last week, raiding their Saxonwold compound and issuing arrest warrants. A number of Gupta associates and a nephew appeared in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court last week in connection the Vrede dairy farm project.

Ajay Gupta, the family patriarch, is currently on the run.

KPMG SA has come under fire for the role it played in the audit of Gupta-owned Linkway Trading, which was allegedly used to channel taxpayers’ money to fund the Guptas’ 2013 Sun City wedding. The money was to have been used for the upliftment of indigent farmers in the Free State.

The firm has also came under fire for its role in the SARS report, especially as it withdrew the report’s conclusions, recommendations and legal opinions but not the report in its entirety.

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