UCT's Risk Management Committee has released amended whistle-blowing guidelines to protect people, and the university's operations, assets and reputation, against illegal activities.
The guidelines are applicable to all staff, students, consultants, vendors, contractors, and/or any other parties with a business relationship with the university.
According to the guidelines, anyone with a reasonable basis for believing that an irregular act has occurred or is occurring has a responsibility to report this immediately.
"Anyone making a report must act in good faith when reporting an allegation, and must disclose all information available to them that is to the matter," the policy reads.
Anyone who acts against a whistle-blower will face legal sanction and disciplinary actions that could lead to dismissal.
Whistle-blowers may choose to remain anonymous, and the university will take reasonable steps to protect their identities and disclosures, provided they have acted in good faith and that they have disclosed all the information available. However, confidential reporting (identity disclosed) rather than anonymous reporting (identity not disclosed), is encouraged.
The university has vowed to treat all information received via a hotline mechanism as confidential, as long as it remains within the control of the organisation.
Whistle-blowing is not a channel for reporting grievances or general complaints; these must be dealt with in terms of the university's grievance procedures, the university has warned. No employee may be adversely affected because they refuse to commit illegal activity. Disciplinary actions will be taken against those who make frivolous or malicious claims against others. (Please refer to the full policy.)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Please view the republishing articles page for more information.