Moy­ane wants job back – but to stay sus­pended

The Herald (South Africa) - - News - Natasha Mar­rian

Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa’s loss of con­fi­dence in Sars boss Tom Moy­ane was suf­fi­cient rea­son to ex­er­cise his ex­ec­u­tive power to fire him‚ pro­vided it was ra­tio­nal.

This was at the heart of Ramaphosa’s case be­fore the high court in Pre­to­ria on Tues­day‚ where ar­gu­ments were heard in Moy­ane’s bid to get his job back.

Moy­ane’s coun­sel‚ Dali Mpofu‚ told the court the sacked tax boss wanted to be re­in­stated – but re­main on sus­pen­sion so he could “face the mu­sic”.

Mpofu said Moy­ane did not want to go back to his desk but was happy to re­main on sus­pen­sion and face a dis­ci­plinary in­quiry.

This is af­ter Moy­ane had spent the past nine months avoid­ing an­swer­ing di­rectly to any al­le­ga­tions put to him by ei­ther the dis­ci­plinary process or in the Sars com­mis­sion of in­quiry chaired by re­tired judge Robert Nu­gent.

Nu­gent rec­om­mended Moy­ane’s ax­ing in an in­terim re­port to Ramaphosa‚ say­ing it was im­per­a­tive that he ap­point a per­ma­nent com­mis­sioner to be­gin the Sars re­newal process.

The Nu­gent in­quiry was in­ves­ti­gat­ing gov­er­nance is­sues at the tax agency‚ which has been mired in al­le­ga­tions of mis­man­age­ment that have de­prived the fis­cus of bil­lions.

Sars has had a short­fall of about R100bn since Moy­ane took over in 2014.

Mpofu said there would be no in­con­ve­nience to Ramaphosa if he were to re­in­state Moy­ane.

Kameshni Pil­lay‚ for Ramaphosa‚ said re­in­stat­ing Moy­ane would deprive the pres­i­dent of his right to ex­er­cise his ex­ec­u­tive power.

She said the ap­point­ment of the Sars com­mis­sioner, and by ex­ten­sion his re­moval, were at the pres­i­dent’s dis­cre­tion.

Judge Hans Fabri­cius said he would hand down judg­ment be­fore De­cem­ber 14‚ which is the dead­line for Nu­gent to sub­mit his fi­nal re­port to Ramaphosa.


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