The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) Commission has released a list of firms it is investigating for suspected violations of the B-BBEE Act, "relating to the B-BBEE ownership structures and noncompliance with the codes of good practice in respect of the verification process". The firms cited are being scrutinised for vague ownership structures, transactions requiring further scrutiny, public procurement and malpractice in the verification industry. Regarding the latter, an irony has emerged since 1994, as commissioner Zodwa Ntuli revealed "only seven out of 65 BEE verification agencies are 100% black-owned". Policy is clearly not enough; how bodies advise on, monitor and measure compliance to policy is often crucial and lucrative, yet employment equity and BEE are largely in white hands. The list of firms and "transactions" under investigation includes the empowerment schemes and trusts of MTN, Netcare, Nokia and Worley Parsons. The list also included two state-owned ...

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