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SARS needs new leadership – SARS Commission chair, Robert Nugent

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The chair of the commission says around R1 billion was lost and many experienced SARS staffers were let go during Tom Moyane’s tenure. 

Retired judge, Robert Nugent, says that appointing a new commissioner is a crucial part of fixing issues at the South African Revenue Service (SARS).

“The process of repairing SARS cannot properly start until a permanent successor has been appointed as the new commissioner. Until then, SARS will limp along at the expense of society at large,” Nugent said in an affidavit referring to Moyane’s application to halt his replacement.


On Monday, 26 November 2018, former SARS commissioner, Moyane lost a ConCourt bid to halt the president’s decision to remove him as the SARS commissioner. Ramaphosa acted on a recommendation made by the SARS commission of inquiry, advising him to fire and replace Tom Moyane in order to save the revenue service.

Nugent said Moyane repeatedly missed opportunities to defend himself before the commission. “From inception, Mr Moyane has remained in the shadows, emerging to attend public hearings for a few hours on one occasion only, and then only to disparage and attempt to derail the commission,” Nugent said.

IOL reported that both Moyane and his lawyer Eric Mabuza failed to attend the many public hearings that were told about.

According to Business Live, some of the issues that Nugent cited included the loss of R1 billion as well as mass retrenchments of capable staff members that occurred during Moyane’s tenure. Nugent said this mismanagement led to the situation being diminished at the tax agency.

Nugent echoed ConCourt Judge Mogoeng Mogoeng’s assertion that Moyane’s application was dismissed partly because he was unable to lay any basis “for direct access in view of the fact that Moyane has other avenues available.”

Moyane is set to approach the North Gauteng High Court to challenge his dismissal.

Xiletelo Mabasa
[email protected]

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