MTN Group Corporate Affairs has released a statement indicating that the special committee chaired by Lord Hoffmann delivered a report to the company’s board regarding allegations of bribery and “extensive corruption” made by Turkcell against MTN.
According to MTN, Lord Hoffmann has dismissed the allegations. In addition to issuing a Johannesburg Stock Exchange news announcement, the company has also released a statement from MTN Group Chairman, Cyril Ramaphosa.
In the statement, Ramaphosa says:
“In February 2012, the MTN Board commissioned Lord Hoffmann to lead a review of the allegations made by Turkcell in the legal case brought against MTN in the United States.
Lord Hoffmann was born in South Africa and has enjoyed an illustrious career as a senior British judge, being appointed to the UK House of Lords in 1995. We felt that the seriousness of these allegations merited an authoritative and independent investigation. As an international jurist of unquestionable legal authority and independence, Lord Hoffmann was selected to chair the Special Committee established by the MTN Board to investigate the allegations.
Following a year-long investigation, Lord Hoffmann has presented the Committee’s findings today to the MTN Board.
Lord Hoffmann’s Committee has determined that the Turkcell allegations are without foundation. Lord Hoffmann concluded that he found nothing in the conduct of MTN over this period that puts at question MTN’s integrity or propriety. This is a reassuring validation of MTN’s culture and ethical business practices. The Board is particularly pleased to note Lord Hoffmann’s categorical findings that the allegations against MTN’s former Group President and CEO Phuthuma Nhleko and MTN’s former Commercial Director Irene Charnley were baseless.
Allegations of complicity against the Chairman and the Group President and CEO Sifiso Dabengwa were similarly found to be without substance.
We have accepted Lord Hoffmann’s recommendation that his report be published in full. The report and a video of Lord Hoffmann delivering the Executive Summary of the Committee’s report are available on the MTN website. The Board is grateful to Lord Hoffmann, and Independent Non-Executive Directors Peter Mageza and Jeff van Rooyen for their work, and the scope and detail of their conclusions.
MTN is one of Africa’s success stories – a great company founded on innovation, courage, and values of honesty and ethical business dealings. I am proud of what we bring to the communities and markets we work in, and what MTN does to improve lives. We can now put these events behind us, and move forward as one ofAfrica’s great companies.”
At the time of publishing, Turkcell did not release any statements and could not be reached for comment.