SARS boss ‘must provide reports’
SA REVENUE Service (SARS) commissioner Tom Moyane was yesterday hauled over the coals by Parliament for the delay in the release of reports related to the work of the revenue service’s chief officer for business and individual tax, Jonas Makwaka.
Members of the parliamentary standing committee on finance were not buying Moyane’s assertion that SARS was willing to “bare its soul” through the release of reports by an international law firm, commissioned by the service to probe Makwakwa’s return to work at SARS.
The committee threatened to issue a summons to compel Monyane to release the reports. It is for this that Monyane was given until Friday to provide Parliament with the reports that placed Makwaka’s financial dealings under scrutiny.
Moyane yesterday said Makwaka had agreed to make his personal tax information available to the committee.
Monyane read a letter from Makwaka and said he agreed to divulge his personal tax information.
“I’m giving commissioner Tom Moyane permission to invoke Section 67(5) to divulge my tax audit report to the minister of finance and the chairperson of the finance standing committee, under the following conditions, (that) no copy of such report can be provided to any other person, (secondly) any member of the portfolio committee can only read the report in the presence of the chairperson and the committee, (thirdly) no pictures can be taken of the copy.”
Monyane was given until Friday to provide Parliament with the reports that placed Makwaka’s dealings under scrutiny.
Makwaka further stated that while he would oblige, he was not obligated to do so.
“I’m giving this permission on the basis of transparency although there’s no legal basis compelling me to do so. I do (not) permit my tax information to be used for any other purpose other than transparency, as my rights as a layman and taxpayer have been extremely violated by my personal information being made public.”
However, parliamentary legal adviser Frank Jenkins told the committee the Tax Administration Act allowed Moyane financial to make available private taxpayer information in order to safeguard SARS’s reputation and integrity.
“It’s not for the taxpayer to give permission, it’s for the commissioner to decide. There’s nothing in there about conditional disclosure,” he said.
Makwaka was suspended last year on allegations of money laundering and was subsequently reinstated. Makwakwa and his partner Kelly-Ann Elskie were alleged to have received several suspicious deposits into their personal bank accounts. The reports investigated Makwaka’s financial transactions – as well as the disciplinary committee that cleared him and Elskie.
COOPERATING: SARS commissioner Tom Moyane has come under fire over the re-employment of a top SARS official.