Johannesburg, 14 December 2018
We are confident that you are aware that SAICA and the accounting profession received considerable criticism over the past year. Much of the criticism has arisen from allegations of inappropriate work carried out by firms, corporate scandals involving chartered accountants and allegations of corruption. The Board of SAICA has implemented various actions to address these issues. At the annual general meeting held on 26 June 2018, the chairman of SAICA announced that the Board would set up a process to look at the governance structure of SAICA and to involve members in the process. In a letter to members sent out on 31 August 2018, the chairman further announced that a Governance Review Task Team (GRTT) had been formed to assess the appropriateness of the current SAICA governance structures and to make recommendations on how they can be improved to deal with issues more effectively and in a more timely manner.
When SAICA was established in 1980, its governance structure comprised a Council based on geographic representation. Over the years, the structure was changed to include representation from various member constituencies such as small and medium practices, members in business, members based in other countries and ABASA. This structure may no longer be appropriate to deal with current and future challenges facing the accountancy profession.
The GRTT has met several times, and it has conducted research into how similar bodies around the world are structured. An appropriate structure for SAICA may not necessarily be the same, or similar, to that used by any other institute. In addition to challenges faced by the global profession, the profession in South Africa faces unique difficulties. The GRTT believes that it cannot arrive at a suitable solution without input and advice from members and member groupings. Accordingly, the GRTT is inviting members and interested member groups to provide input.
The GRTT is proposing, as part of phase one of its terms of reference (as detailed in the circular to members on 31 August 2018), a governance structure in line with the principles of King IV ™. The proposed structure would consist of an inclusive, independent, member-elected, professional, paid Board, supported by an advisory Council that is representative of the diverse interests of all members. The President of the Council would serve as a member of the Board, but would not be Chairman of the Board.
Please read Appendix A, which is included to provide background and context to the proposed governance structure.
We have developed an anonymous questionnaire, in the form of a survey, which we would like you to complete. All responses will remain anonymous and only aggregated data will be used in the report. We have kept the questionnaire short so that it does not take up a lot of your time. Members are welcome to supplement the questionnaire with additional comments and input. We appreciate your cooperation and thank you for your assistance. This is a critical time for the profession. Decisions made now will impact the future standing of the profession and its members.
Members should follow this link to complete the questionnaire immediately on receipt of this email, however the final submission date will be 31 January 2019. (If you have difficulty with the questionnaire, please copy the link to a different browser.) For members who wish to engage with the GRTT on this topic prior to completing the survey, there will be consultation sessions and webcasts on the following dates and cities:
|Date and City||Session||Webcast|
|Wednesday, 16 January, Johannesburg||Book your seat*
07h00 – 10h30
08h00 – 10h30
|Wednesday, 16 January, Durban||Book your seat*
14h00 – 17h30
15h00 – 17h30
|Friday, 18 January, Bloemfontein||Book your seat*
09h00 – 12h30
10h00 – 12h30
|Tuesday, 29 January, Cape Town||Book your seat*
11h30 – 15h00
12h30 – 15h00
|* includes registration process – view details on brochure link.
The venues for the relevant sessions will be advised and the brochure updated accordingly.
Please help us to develop a governance structure that will ensure quick and efficient decision-making, address key member needs and restore confidence in the accountancy profession in South Africa.
Chairman of the Board
Chairman of the GRTT