1. What is a whistleblowing hotline?
A whistleblowing hotline is a simple, yet highly effective management tool designed to enable concerned employees and students, as well as third parties associated with the College to report fraudulent, corrupt and unethical practices in the College. The hotline will allow False Bay TVET College staff, students, suppliers and other interested parties to report illegal and unethical conduct, abuse of College assets, bribery and corruption, theft, fraud, gender-based violence and Exam irregularities confidentially and anonymously.
2. Why does the College need a whistleblowing hotline?
False Bay TVET College is committed to maintaining a culture of ethical compliance. Given that most cases of fraud at the workplace are committed internally, it is up to employees and other stakeholders to report any instances of fraud, corruption or misconduct. A whistleblowing hotline forms part of good corporate governance.
3. What can I report to the hotline?
These may include any incidents of wrongdoing, e.g. criminal offences, theft, fraud, unethical behaviour or misconduct, health and safety violations, gender-based violence, irregular awarding of tenders, damage to the environment, financial statement fraud, student financial aid fraud, dishonesty, misuse of property and assets and corruption. This extends to the integrity of the examinations.
4. Who is responsible for running the False Bay TVET College hotline?
An external service provider is responsible for the administration of the False Bay TVET College whistleblowing hotline.
5. How do I get in touch with the hotline if I have information to report?
The College’s hotline number is 0800 110 770 and the call centre operates 24 hours a day and is available 365 days a year. This is a toll-free number if one is phoning from a Telkom landline. Calls are fielded by experienced call centre agents in any of the official languages, and all reported information is captured onto a call sheet and transited directly to a designated person at the College.
6. Besides phoning, how else can I get in touch with the hotline?
You can send an SMS to 33490 or an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can post the information to Whistle Blowers (Pty) Ltd, PO Box 51006, Musgrave, 4062. You may also choose to go to the website www.whistleblowing.co.za. However, it is preferable to phone as there are questions that will be asked by the call centre agents in order to ensure that enough information is provided to assist in the investigation.
7. Does the call centre cater for any languages besides English?
Yes, the call centre has agents that cater for all 11 official South African languages.
8. I don’t like call centre agents as they can be very annoying!
Whistle Blowers use qualified and adequately trained call centre agents who abide by the standards set by the Ethics Institute of South Africa (EthicsSA). This ensures that they provide the highest quality of professionalism and ask questions that will assist in the investigation.
9. What makes Whistle Blowers the ideal service provider?
The hotline is accredited by the Ethics Institute of South Africa (EthicsSA). This certification is a best practice set of guidelines for external whistleblowing hotline service providers; it has been created to establish a set of principles to guide companies in terms of integrity, efficiency, independence, protection and availability.
10. How can False Bay TVET College protect me if I blow the whistle?
Anyone with a reasonable basis for believing that an irregular act has occurred or is occurring has a responsibility to report this immediately. Furthermore, anyone making a report must act in good faith when reporting an allegation and must disclose all information available to him or her that is relevant to the matter. Whistleblowers are protected by law.
The Protected Disclosures Act No 26 of 2000 makes provision for procedures in terms of which employees may disclose information anonymously regarding unlawful or irregular conduct by their employers or fellow employees. It is for this reason that all matters reported on the hotline will be referred to the Principal and or College Council to ensure that the necessary investigations have been carried out. Where corruption, fraud and/or abuse of property or assets are proven, they will ensure that the necessary action is taken against the perpetrators.
11. How long does it take to investigate matters reported to the hotline?
The investigations will depend on the complexity of the alleged misconduct, so this will vary from case to case. Allow for at least three weeks before making a follow-up call to the hotline.
12. What kind of information will I be expected to provide?
It is important that when a report is made, relevant details should be available, including: In which division/department did the incident take place? Where specifically did it happen? What is the nature of the incident? Date and time the incident took place? How long has this been going on? How often does this happen? Number of people involved and names? Does anybody else know about it? Do you have any proof that could assist in the investigation? Are there any witnesses? Do you have any other relevant information which could be of assistance when undertaking an investigation?