Johannesburg, Thursday, July 16, 2020 – The Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA) has confirmed that it had already opened an investigation into the auditor of EOH Technology Solutions Ltd (EOH) on March 10, 2020, subsequent to receiving a complaint in February 2020. This follows in response to a Financial Mail editorial note on the EOH accounting issues in which the Financial Mail incorrectly suggested that the IRBA is not taking any action.
The IRBA advises that it was not asked for any comment on the EOH matter on whether there was an open investigation or not, or whether it had already taken any action in this matter prior to the publication of the Financial Mail article.
In fact, the IRBA had EOH and its auditor on a media monitoring watchlist for two years and has been following reports in the public domain about the alleged accounting fraud as the story has unfolded since it was first reported in 2018.
The IRBA under Section 48(1) of the Auditing Profession Act 26 of 2005 (APA), can open an investigation where there are reasonable grounds for suspicion that a registered auditor has committed an act which may render him guilty of improper conduct; or is of the opinion that a complaint or allegation of improper conduct which has been made against a registered auditor appears to be justified.
The IRBA can start an investigation in one of three ways:
The IRBA does not comment on allegations or matters under investigation.
More about the IRBA:
The IRBA is a public protection statutory body established to protect the financial interests of the public by ensuring registered auditors and their firms deliver services of the highest quality. It upholds audit firm independence to ensure that audit quality is such that it enhances the accuracy and credibility of financial performance reporting. In this way, the IRBA has an important role to play in building the reputation of South Africa as an investment market for both local and global investors and driving economic growth for the country.
The IRBA also registers suitably qualified accountants as auditors, who must adhere to the highest ethics standards, and promotes the auditing profession through the effective regulation of assurance conducted in accordance with internationally recognised standards and processes.