Promoting high ethical standards and combating corruption throughout our sphere of influence is an important part of our drive to deliver social value through our core activities.
Our Code of Conduct
Sasol adopted a new Code of Conduct for the Group in February 2018. At least every two years, senior and middle management, as well as employees identified as being in potentially exposed positions, are required to formally certify that they know and understand the Code of Conduct and its associated guidelines. This certification process further supports efforts to fight corruption. Furthermore, ethics culture surveys are conducted through external parties.
Whistle blower protection
The Protected Disclosures Act 26 of 2000 in South Africa protects whistle blowers when making a ‘protected disclosure’ (disclosure). Managers must act in accordance with these provisions when encountering whistle blowing. At Sasol, a disclosure made to the Sasol EthicsLine (our independently managed anonymous reporting facility), to a legal adviser to obtain legal advice and to an employer in accordance with any agreed procedure, is protected. Certain disclosures made to external parties are also protected.
Training policies and processes
Ethics training is given to all new and existing employees across the Sasol Group. During 2018 a total of 1 247 new employees received ethics related training by the Group Ethics Office. In addition, Sasol has trained a total of 328 learners on ethics during the period. The Group Ethics Office also supported the Assurance Services Function in a drive to encourage ethical conduct. A training course called Exploring Ethics and Economic Crime was attended by 1 014 employees.
Ethics Officers are appointed per operating model entity (OME) by the respective senior vice presidents. The role of Ethics Officers is to promote the advancement of ethics as well as ensure proper and adequate investigation into unethical conduct cases within their respective OME. During the reporting period four Ethics Officers were appointed and trained. Further, Ethics Investigators are appointed by OME Ethics Officers to carry out investigations relating to ethics matters for the specific OME. Training for Ethics Investigators is conducted as and when required, with 57 officers receiving training this year.
social ethics line and investigation activity
- During 2018, 651 calls were made to the EthicsLine, many of which had multiple allegations of ethics breaches. This represents an increase from the 482 calls reported in 2017. The additional calls are mainly related to an increase in cybercrime of a nature where unknown persons attempt to extract money from the public through ‘request for quote’, and employment scams.
- Of the 287 substantiated allegations, 61% related to dishonesty, 16% to irresponsibility, 12% to unfairness and the remainder to disrespect.
- The Group Ethics office provides assurance that appropriate corrective actions are taken on ethical transgressions. In 14 instances the investigations or disciplinary processes resulted in service terminations. These related to behaviour such as fraud and misrepresentation, falsification, assault and disorderly conduct, legal and policy non-compliance, theft and unsatisfactory performance. A total of 55 allegations resulted in verbal-, written-, serious- and final warnings.