CARILLION SCANDAL Council auditors’ conflict of interest ought also be included in government reference to Competition & Markets Authority

17 May 2018

The Work and Pensions Select Committee has recommended.

"212.The lack of meaningful competition creates conflicts of interest at every turn. In the case of Carillion, KPMG were external auditors, Deloitte were internal auditors and EY were tasked with turning the company around."

"213.We recommend that the Government refers the statutory audit market to the Competition and Markets Authority. The terms of reference of that review should explicitly include consideration of both breaking up the Big Four into more audit firms, and detaching audit arms from those providing other professional services".

TAP's concerns about council auditors conflict of interest in June 2015. 

TAP raised concerns about a conflict of interest our meeting with Grant Thorton about Haringey's council tax court costs on the 5th June 2015. Grant Thornton claimed that as as independently appointed auditors, they work to a Code of Practice within a legislative framework, and that they would be performing a clear statutory role. They also confirmed that the costs of Grant Thornton undertaking the audit of the accounts of Haringey Borough Council would be paid by Haringey Borough Council.

The inquiry into council tax costs took place as a result of Rev Paul Niclson's objection to Haringey's accounts and as part of the annual audit. As a result the council had to reduce the costs. So 20,000 residents a year had been overcharged court costs by Haringey Council but Grant Thornton refused to produce a public interest report.

Here is the relevant minute of that meeting if the 5th June 2015 bewteen TAP and Grant Thornton..

"PN said that because of TAP’s widespread support, inevitably, somebody would ask about any potential conflict of interest in Grant Thornton undertaking this inquiry. SE explained that Grant Thornton, as independently appointed auditors, works to a Code of Practice within a legislative framework, and that they would be performing a clear statutory role. PN thanked her for this reassurance. SE confirmed that the costs of Grant Thornton undertaking this inquiry would be met by Haringey Borough Council. "

Council's auditors' conflict of interest ought also be included in government reference to Competition and Markets Authority 


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