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Damas digging deep
The jewellery company has appointed PWC as an external auditor to scrutinize the “unauthorized transactions” performed by its ex-CEO.
October 15, 2009 4:20 by Aarti Nagraj
Dubai-based jewellery company Damas announced that it has appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) as an auditor to examine the unauthorized transactions conducted by former CEO and managing director Tawhid Abdulla.
The company said that it has formed a separate internal committee consisting of the chairman Tawfique Abdulla, and two non-executive directors to inspect the transactions. The committee will hear the findings from PWC, which will then be disclosed to Nasdaq Dubai and the DFSA.
“The appointment of PWC demonstrates the board’s commitment to Corporate Governance and how seriously we take the disclosure from Tawhid to the board, regarding these transactions,” said Tawfique Abdulla in a press statement. “The focus now is on cooperating with PWC so they can report their findings to the regulators, bringing clarity and reassurance to all of our stakeholders through the independent audit,” he said.
“The Abdulla family is fully committed to repaying, in cash, all of the transactions and we have more than enough assets to achieve this,” he added.
Although Damas has not elaborated on the nature of the transactions, it has estimated that they could be worth around $165 million. Gaetano Cavalieri, a Damas board member, told The National that they “involved investments with an unidentified property company.”
Currently, the board has appointed deputy CEO Hisham Ashour as chief executive of the company.
However, Tawhid Abdulla, who resigned from Damas on Monday, claimed that he was being wrongly implicated. “I did not do it,” he told Reuters on Tuesday. “The news about me making unauthorised transactions is not true,” he added.