To a country convinced it is the exception to what is happening elsewhere, it’s probably a surprise that there is widespread consternation globally about the role that auditors should play in a modern economy.Here in SA we’ve had enough auditing disasters to know something is wrong. The case of VBS Mutual Bank, where KPMG’s lead banking partner was implicated in the corruption, is probably the worst of the lot. But KPMG also failed in its audit of the Gupta family company Linkway Trading, while Deloitte’s auditors are under fire over their handling of microlender African Bank, which collapsed in 2013. And that’s before you even get to Steinhoff, or Tongaat Hulett.But it hasn’t been plain sailing overseas either.In the UK, auditor EY is being investigated for the audit it carried out at travel company Thomas Cook, which fell over last month. There’s also the British apparel retailer BHS, which collapsed in 2016 even after auditors PwC signed it off as a going concern, and constructio...

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