Enron board gives Andersen the sack

The decision, made yesterday, came on the same day chief US financial watchdog the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is investigating Andersen’s role in Enron’s collapse, announced plans for a major review of how the US accountancy profession is regulated.

In a written statement Enron’s chairman and CEO Kenneth Lay said: ‘As announced on October 31, the Enron board of directors convened a special committee to look into accounting and other issues relating to certain transactions.

‘While we had been willing to give Andersen the benefit of the doubt until the completion of that investigation, we can’t afford to wait any longer in light of recent events, including the reported destruction of documents by Andersen personnel and the disciplinary actions taken against several of Andersen’s partners working in its Houston office.’

The company says it will now begin the selection process for an alternative auditor.

Andersen had not responded at press time.

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