South African finance minister, Malusi Gigaba, today, 16 December 2017, urged the government to be as vigilant with private sector corruption as it was with public sector corporate governance, saying that it was government’s duty to do so.
Citing recent scandal at South African-based giant retailer Steinhoff International, Gigaba said the multinational retailer’s corporate governance should receive the same scrutiny that is given to government departments and state-owned enterprises when they flounder.
Steinhoff was plunged into controversy last week when its long-time chief executive, Markus Jooste, resigned in a huff citing accounting irregularities for allegedly misrepresenting profits at subsidiaries following an investigation to the company’s financials by German authorities.
The scandal wiped off about ZAR190 billion in Steinhoff market capitalization as the share price plummeted.
“Steinhoff must receive the same scrutiny as alleged corruption in the public sector. Regulatory bodies will investigate Steinhoff. Ultimately, we need to act decisively to restore public confidence in our public and corporate leadership, as well as our revolution as a country,” says Gigaba.