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Guptas have never been a client of McKinsey

19 September 2017 - 16:15 By Graeme Hosken
Local banks refuse to host accounts for Ajay and Atul Gupta's companies.
Local banks refuse to host accounts for Ajay and Atul Gupta's companies.
Image: MARTIN RHODES

International consultancy firm McKinsey on Tuesday flat out rejected any connection with the controversial Gupta family.

This comes as the Democratic Alliance earlier in the day laid charges of fraud‚ racketeering and collusion against the company for its alleged facilitation of deals between the Gupta family and state-owned entities.

McKinsey has been under fire for its dealings with the Guptas‚ who secured multi-billion rand coal supply tenders with Eskom.

Last week Corruption Watch head David Lewis also said he would be bringing bribery and corruption charges against McKinsey with the US Justice Department over the firm’s alleged business dealings with the Guptas.

Those charges stem from dealings with Gupta-linked firm Trillian‚ which saw the company being paid nearly R500-million for work it never did for Eskom.

On Tuesday afternoon‚ McKinsey spokesman DJ Carella told TimesLIVE the company had not engaged in corruption or paid bribes.

"Neither the Gupta family nor any company publicly linked to the Guptas has ever been a client of McKinsey‚" she said.

"McKinsey never entered into a formal contract with Trillian‚ never paid or authorised payments to Trillian and was never asked to approve any payments made by Eskom to Trillian.

"Eskom paid McKinsey and Trillian separately. Payments made by Eskom to Trillian were presumably governed by Eskom's rules and processes for approval of third-party payments‚" Carella said.

DA MP Natasha Mazzone said earlier on Tuesday that the charges against McKinsey‚ under the Prevention and Combatting of Corrupt Activities Act‚ stemmed from allegations that McKinsey had ignored warnings from its senior South African staff‚ as far back as the beginning of 2013‚ of possible dodgy deals with Trillian‚ Eskom and other Gupta-linked companies.

“These allegations must now be fully investigated. Criminal charges are the first step in ensuring that if any wrongdoing has taken place‚ those responsible can be brought to book.”

Carella said that McKinsey would cooperate with any official inquiry and investigation.

 

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