Bell Pottinger complaint upheld; DA now awaits ruling - likely on 4 September
24 August 2017
The DA has received confirmation that our complaint against Bell Pottinger has been upheld.
This means that the UK’s Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) Professional Practices Committee has agreed that Bell Pottinger did indeed violate its Professional Charter, and/or its Public Affairs and Lobbying Code of Conduct.
In a statement last week, the PRCA indicated that “[i]f the complaint(s) are not upheld, the Professional Practices Committee’s decision will be provided to Bell Pottinger and the PRCA will publish the decision by 24th August”.
We have now received confirmation that our complaint stands, and Bell Pottinger will now be given five days to appeal the PRCA’s decision if it so chooses.
If Bell Pottinger appeals, the PRCA’s Board of Management will consider the appeal and either approve, amend, or overrule the decision by the Professional Practices Committee and then publish the final decision during the week beginning 4 September 2017.
The DA looks forward to the PRCA’s full decision regarding disciplinary action against Bell Pottinger. As soon as we receive this we will communicate on it.
During its work for Oakbay Capital, the Gupta family and the President Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzane Zuma, Bell Pottinger exploited the already sensitive race relations in South Africa, and a strong message must be sent to the PRCA that unethical conduct by its members will not be tolerated.
We trust that a strong sanction will be given against Bell Pottinger.
We reiterate our call for Bell Pottinger to do the right thing and disclose all Gupta contracts and monies from their accounts with the Guptas and reinvest it into South Africa.
Issued by Phumzile Van Damme, DA Shadow Minister of Communications, 24 August 2017