Having problems as a brand is common, but maintaining your position on integrity makes you stand out from the rest! Lest you forget, Integrity is a matter of being honest or having firm adherence to a code of morals or artistic Values.
As a brand this has to start from the top cream, trickling down to the junior staff. It’s true that corruption exists, and once in a while, big brands like safaricom are cuffed up in matters that question their integrity, No debate about this, but again how often have they been caught up, how many cases are in court? Who has been acquitted of the same? How were the previous cases handled?
This and many questions raise eyebrows or dispute. But, first things first, The KPMG Report, is Safaricom guilty or not guilty?
To ensure that Compliance and governance policies are taken seriously, Safaricom Chief Executive Bob Collymore commissioned the KPMG Report to carry out and audit ongoing and concluded projects in an aim to ensure that said policies are followed to the latter by all stakeholders concerned.
It is so unfortunate that some people have compared him to the Lord of corruption in the private sector despite being a whistle blower in the same industry.
Two years after his appointment, Collymore spearheaded the sacking of about 70 employees and prosecution of 16 more after the mobile service provider detected 11 cases of economic crime that was dragging its growth. Here, we are talking of over Ksh.100 million in question.
According to Price Water Coopers (PWC) 2012 report on corporates, Safaricom became one of the few companies in corporate Kenya to unveil its fraud statistics in a market where firms prefer to remain silent over economic crimes fearing brand damage.
Two years later, in 2014, the brand fired 56 more employees in fraud related cases in the year ended march 2013. The firing resulted from 32 audits done on the company as some were requested by the management.
Once again, Collymore led this one too, terming the action as a move to ensure transparency and building a sustainable and meaningful business.
This was followed by the stepping down of its Deputy C.E.O Mr. Peter Arina last year due to a major shake up by safaricom management based on streamlining its integrity issues.
Back to the KPMG Report, it’s nothing different, having being commissioned by Collymore himself, and its part of proof on his faithfulness to integrity issues.
According to our findings, the report was made for internal purposes only and not for public consumption. Infact it was only meant for the chief executive and Head of project management organisation Irene Miru. Hence,according to corporate governance practices,it was unlawfully released.
Last but not least, it was a draft report. This means, neither the final copy nor the verified copy. Therefore, there is a high probability that people are debating based on the “wrong” facts.
Despite big bosses from the brand being mentioned, there is absolutely no evidence that mentioned characters benefited inappropriately from any of safaricoms commercial agreements.
Early this year, Collymore made public his wealth as a way of championing for integrity at safaricom and across all other companies locally.
It is true that corruption exists in the company, something that Bob himself has said and is in the public domain. It is also in other brands and the government. It is notBut, should this be a reason for individuals to create negative perceptions and execute reputation attacks on brands having hidden selfish interests?