US Firm Bain Quits BLSA, Denies Role In Graft

BLSA
DISMISSED CRITICISM: Business Leadership South Africa CEO Busi Mavuso

A day after Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) responded to criticism of having disgraced Bain & Company as a member, the local unit of US management consultants quit the lobby group so as not to “distract”.

Business Day reports that Bain South Africa said in a statement that it was withdrawing its membership from BLSA so that it “should not distract from the important work” the lobby group does for the local business community.

On Monday BLSA CEO Busi Mavuso addressed criticism directed at the organisation and herself over the stance taken on Bain after the Zondo Commission exposed the company’s role in hollowing out the SA Revenue Service (SARS).

“Much of this has been ignorant of the facts, poorly informed, sensationalist, and not even vaguely constructive,” said Mavuso.

“I completely understand there is much anger at Bain following the Zondo Commission report, as there should be.

“What Bain did at Sars was highly damaging and every South African is right to be angry. But we need to channel this anger properly.”

The BLSA CEO disputed criticism claiming BLSA has “embraced” or “defended” Bain following the Zondo Commission findings.

Instead, Mavuso points to 2018 when BLSA suspended Bain following revelations at the Nugent Commission. Bain was, however, re-admitted to BLSA in April last year after it returned the millions of rand it was paid by SARS.

Mavuso said the previous suspensions related to State capture, including KPMG, Transnet, and Eskom.

“We acknowledge that Bain South Africa unknowingly participated in the process that caused serious damage to the South African Revenue Service through various lapses of leadership and governance,” said Bain reportedly said.

Bain denies being party to corruption.

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