A six-month forensic investigation into the finances of Tongaat Hullet carried out by PwC has found that the companies executives overstated profits and assets in its earnings reports. The Johannesburg Stock Exchange listed sugar producer has said it intends to institute civil claims against former top executives, including its ex-CEO and some Zimbabwean executives.
Said the company in a statement:
John Chibwe (Hippo Valley EstatesFinance Director), Michael Deighton (former managing director of THD), Steve Frampton (former Zimbabwe Sugar Sales General Manager), Shelton Nhari (Triangle Finance Director), Sydney Mtsambiwa (former managing director of THL’s Zimbabwean operations), Les Munro (former Finance Executive of Tongaat Hulett SA Sugar), Murray Munro (former Chief Financial Officer of THL), Mr Raphael Pfunye (Zimbabwe Sugar Sales Finance Executive), Sean Slabbert (former Finance Executive of THL); Peter Staude (former Chief Executive Officer of THL).
Disciplinary action has been or is being taken in relation to certain of the senior executives referred to above and other individuals. The Board is considering the institution of civil actions against the senior executives referred to above and other individuals, including, amongst others: actions to recover bonuses and benefits paid to specific executives and other individuals for the relevant periods; and applications to court for orders declaring relevant people to be delinquent directors or otherwise incapable of occupying fiduciary positions.”
PwC conducted the investigation at the request of the current group CEO, Gavin Hudson. The company had received allegations of financial wrongdoing via its internal whistle-blowing line.