One major obstacle in the fight against fraud, corruption and unethical behaviour is the reluctance of individuals to “blow the whistle” on such activities due to the fear of retribution, or victimization by employers or colleagues’.
But according to Reyaz Mihular, Partner - Head of Advisory Services KPMG Ford Rhodes Thornton & Co, a positive whistle blowing culture is a critical element in the success of any fraud risk management system.
"The survey will focus on obtaining opinions with regard to the type of fraud, quantum, people involved, industries and the actions taken to mitigate fraud on a very generic point," he said explaining a new fraud survey being launched.
This event also saw KPMG launching an ethics hotline. Mr. Mihular, detailing the benefits of this ethics hotline, said that it will give some confidence to the whistle blower as this is handled by an independent party which will ensure anonymity through confidentiality of the whole process. He also said that there will be no cost for the whistle blower as the reporting channels are free of charge (Toll Free Number).
Mr. Mihular added that as this is the first of its kind in Sri Lanka there will be a good reception from the corporate world. “We believe they will be interested in what the survey results show."
When asked about the corporate governance structures in Sri Lanka, he said that the country has made significant progress in this area. "As in any fast growing market, this is an area that we can consider ‘as work in progress’,” he added.
Mr. Mihular said that white collar crime in the country cannot be gauged. He said that there isn't enough information in the public domain on this aspect. "It may be because several companies sometimes do not follow through on such crime with the enforcement agencies for reasons best known to them," he added.