USA authorities probe SAP as Gupta scandal escalates

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SAP's South African unit paid at least R107m in kickbacks to Gupta-related intermediaries for contracts won from Transnet and Eskom, the German software group said on Thursday.

It has, however, uncovered indications of misconduct in issues relating to the management of Gupta-related third parties.

And the company said it would eliminate all sales commission on all public sector deals in countries that scores below 50 on Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index.

The Hawks says it's working with USA and German authorities in their investigations of companies allegedly linked to the capture of South African state owned enterprises (SOEs).

SAP's investigation has so far cleared one employee, while formal disciplinary proceedings have been instituted against three others.

SAP will publish full findings of its investigation upon conclusion of the investigation.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has released a statement calling on the software giant SAP to reveal the names of people who facilitated the receipt of the bribe on the part of the Gupta-owned company.

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"We can not emphasize enough how seriously the SAP executive Board takes these allegations, or how committed we are to managing this process in a transparent, ethical and responsible way", SAP Executive board member Adaire Fox-Martin told reporters in Johannesburg. "We have not yet made a decision if we will approach South African authorities".

SAP, along with auditors KPMG and consultant McKinsey & Co., has become entangled in allegations surrounding the Guptas, who are friends with President Jacob Zuma and have been in business with his son.

SAP admitted to paying millions to a Gupta-linked company that assisted it with contracts with Eskom and Transnet.

The company said it had voluntarily disclosed the situation in its South African business to USA authorities.

The Guptas, whose interests include mining and media companies, are being investigated in South Africa over the appropriation of public money, known as "state capture".

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the United States and the UK's Serious Fraud Office are investigating claims of money laundering through bank accounts and various firms connected to the Gupta family.