Picture: 123RF/nonwarit
Picture: 123RF/nonwarit

The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (Saica) acknowledges that our members are fully within their rights to have strong opinions on the status and standing of the profession of which they currently hold membership.

However, the comments by Erik Venter and Simon Mantell are unfortunate in that they have not engaged with Saica on the merits of the content of the article before it appeared in the media. Had they done so, Saica would have had the opportunity to point out various factual inaccuracies.

Among these inaccuracies are that Saica is not taking appropriate, decisive action against errant members or embarking on a process to restore trust in the CA (SA) designation and the profession.

On the contrary, as has been communicated to members on various occasions, in 2016 Saica introduced noncompliance with laws and regulations (Noclar) provisions to its professional code, effective from July 2017; has set up a compliance division to improve member compliance with various legal and regulatory requirements; is increasing resources for disciplinary proceedings by ring-fencing an additional R30m to cover the cost of investigative processes and disciplinary matters foreseen for 2019; and has instituted a governance review to determine how the institute’s governance structures should better serve the public interest rather than just member interest.

It is therefore disingenuous to claim that Saica has done very little to restore trust in the profession. The final arbiters of whether Saica is relevant to its members are our members themselves. In this regard, Saica invites all of its members to join its recently launched member engagement initiative, called #countmein, to share their views on how the fundamental principles outlined in the Saica code of professional conduct should be adhered to in its entirety by all members.

Saica invites all members, and Venter and Mantell in particular, to proactively engage with Saica to provide constructive input and solutions for the benefit of the CA profession, and ultimately the SA economy.

Fanisa Lamola
Acting Saica CEO