British PR association confirms probe into Bell Pottinger

The PR agency has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and has reportedly appointed a law firm to audit the work it has done for the Gupta-owned Oakbay Investments.

FILE: A screengrab of the protected British public relations firm Bell Pottinger Twitter page. Picture: Twitter.

CAPE TOWN - The British-based Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) has confirmed it has launched an investigation into Bell Pottinger.

The association is one of two with which the Democratic Alliance (DA) has lodged complaints.

The party is accusing the British PR firm of promoting racial hatred in South Africa following leaked emails which allegedly detail the agency's strategies for the Gupta-owned Oakbay Investments.

The Public Relations and Communications Association says it will probe whether Bell Pottinger contravened its Professional Charter and Code of Conduct.

The PR agency has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and has reportedly appointed a law firm to audit the work it has done for the Gupta-owned Oakbay Investments.

Bell Pottinger and the DA have 10 days to provide a committee appointed by the association with written summaries stating their cases.

The committee will then assess the case within 20 days.

Bell Pottinger could see its membership suspended or terminated.

Meanwhile, South African Tourism has appointed a new PR firm to service the British market after its extended contract with Bell Pottinger lapsed at the end of June.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)