Anonymous Tip-off service up and running
Deloitte and Touche has launched an affordable, cost effective toll-free Tip offs Anonymous service that will enable employees of companies registered for this service to anonymously give tips on fraudulent or corrupt activities taking place in their organisation.
The toll-free Tip offs Anonymous service is an existing Deloitte and Touche service which has been available in South Africa since 1999. There are about 10 local companies using this service including RCC, Nampost, NBL, MVA Fund, NamibMills, Multichoice and Bank Windhoek.
According to Alex Klein, manager of risk advisory at Deloitte and Touche, some Namibian companies have been clients of Tip offs Anonymous even when the service was only available in South Africa. The company felt it fit to introduce the services locally in order to minimise the cost effectiveness and for people to use it as per its intention.
“For the past number of years, we had 10 or so Namibian clients of Tip offs anonymous but they had to call or email to South Africa if they had complaints. The service was toll free to South Africa if you called from a land line but if you call from a cellphone it wasn’t toll free,” he said.
He added that the cost effectiveness and the language barriers were some of the reasons why Deloitte and Touche decided to roll on their service to Namibia and offer the service in local languages such as Oshiwambo and Oshiherero as well as Afrikaans, English, German, French and Portuguese.
“There was not that much calls that were recorded from a Namibian perspective and a lot of calls could not go through because people could not speak in their own language that was also one of the reasons why we started with the business case to start it here locally,” said Klein.
The local service has been available to local Tip Off Anonymous clients since last week Wednesday.
Klein also said the challenge faced when providing this service in Namibia is that there is currently no legislation for the protection of whistle blowers like the case in South Africa and that reports can be subpoenaed in court should fraudulent activities occur.
“But at the end of the day, if you do not provide us with your details how can we give them to the court. Once we remove your details from the report, we do not have any thing to give. The only thing we can give, that can be used in a case or follow up action is your evidence but where that evidence came from cannot be subpoenaed,” he said.