So it’s the tax­man who’s hop­ing to make a killing

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - LIFE -

morn­ing meet­ing late, I had no such ex­cuse. What traf­fic?

But since the construction on the roads around the sta­dium in Green Point I, too, had an ex­cuse to be late, al­though I must say my col­leagues and boss no longer buy this story, as no one buys the sixth death of my granny. Par­tic­u­larly now that the me­dia re­ported the sta­dium had been handed over to the city au­thor­i­ties. But for a few months, it worked.

But I now, too, have a rea­son to hate the World Cup, be­cause it is about to rob me of my shel­ter. Sud­denly, my land­lady will not re­new my lease come the first of Fe­bru­ary, her rea­son be­ing she would like to do some sweep­ing ren­o­va­tions to the flat, in­clud­ing fix­ing the geyser pres­sure I’ve been com­plain­ing about for so long. This she ex­pects to do prob­a­bly in the mid­dle of the year, given that she will be com­ing into a lump sum pay­ment around this time from one of her long-term in­vest­ments. This means that from the first of Fe­bru­ary the lease will run month to month, with a month’s no­tice pe­riod.

I’m no san­goma, but I have a sneaky pre­mo­ni­tion that I will get a let­ter of no­tice on ex­actly May 1, 2010, giv­ing me a month’s no­tice to va­cate the flat I’ve called home for more than three years, to make way for “ren­o­va­tions”.

So I’ve joined the line of dis­grun­tled of the 2010 World Cup, in­clud­ing con­ser­va­tion­ists, or tree hug­gers, and those who were re­fused con­tracts and tenders for the construction of and work around the sta­dium.

So when I read about the tax the South African Rev­enue Ser­vice (Sars) plans to levy on those hop­ing to make a quick buck from the World Cup, I chuck­led. It’s re­ported that Sars is looking to call for any­thing up to 40 per­cent of the in­come made by the en­ter­pris­ing peo­ple wish­ing to make a killing from for­eign vis­i­tors. This is above in­sur­ance poli­cies or other ren­o­va­tions and ex­pen­di­ture peo­ple will un­der­take to make a killing.

So fi­nally I see what Mrs Al­bert was talk­ing about all along, and I’m on her side on both counts, ex­cept the part about thugs. Clearly the wis­dom of the el­derly still ex­ists, at least in part.

The sta­dium is fin­ished, and on time, so I have no ex­cuse to be late for work. Not only that, I have no place to stay. Truth be told, no one will lease me a place since they, too, wish to make their buck dur­ing the World Cup.

Mrs Al­bert has al­ways been happy to in­vite me for tea and gin­ger bis­cuits, and I have to hope that she’ll let me use her son’s room, if only un­til the World Cup craze blows over. In re­turn, I will be more than will­ing to lis­ten to her gripe about her daugh­ter-in-law’s in­de­cency, such as wear­ing dresses which re­veal her arms, and never hav­ing baked a bis­cuit in her life.

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