Anoj Singh finally counted out
OUTA welcomes the decision by the SA Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) to strike Anoj Singh from the roll of chartered accountants. This means he may no longer work as a CA.
However, OUTA is impatient to see criminal charges and civil claims against Singh arising from his role in the capture and looting of Transnet and Eskom. It is now up to law-enforcement agencies to take this matter forward.
Singh was the CFO of Transnet and later Eskom and heavily implicated in state capture involving billions of rand.
OUTA laid a complaint against Singh with SAICA in September 2017, calling for him to be struck from the roll, and has long awaited this ruling. A month before that, OUTA opened a criminal case of corruption and financial misconduct against Singh at the Randburg SAPS.
On 14 August 2020, three years after OUTA’s complaint, SAICA found Singh guilty of 12 charges and formally excluded him from SAICA membership, effectively striking him from the roll and preventing him from practicing as a CA.
SAICA started hearing the matter in November 2019 and final argument was heard in July 2020. Singh refused to attend.
Singh was Transnet acting or permanent CFO from 2009 to August 2015, when he moved to Eskom where he was CFO until he was put on special in July 2017, then suspended, and then resigned in January 2018.
The SAICA charges against him related to his role the massive Transnet procurement of 1064 locomotives, which started in 2012 and was overpriced and lost billions of rand to corruption. Singh was involved throughout this deal including in negotiating with bidders. He was instrumental in getting the deal approved in 2013 at R38.6 billion, then a year later after contracts were signed inflating it by R15.9 billion to R54.5 billion. This increase was based on a memorandum which Singh co-wrote and this document was central to the SAICA charges.
Further SAICA charges related to his role at Eskom. This was regarding approving irregular payments of R30 million to Trillian although Eskom had no contract with it, issuing a performance guarantee of R1.68 billion in favour of the Guptas’ Tegeta business, and providing financial assistance of R659 million which enabled Tegeta to buy Optimum coal mine.
SAICA found that Singh was grossly negligent, dishonest, showed a “clear lack of accountability” and committed serious breaches of the SAICA code of conduct while in important positions at Transnet and Eskom, resulting in them suffering “substantial financial prejudice”.
The SAICA decision is here.
More information on the Transnet 1064 deal is here.