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Moyane asks Gordhan to explain leakages of confidential letters

Moyane has conceded that his relationship with the minister has been strained but insists that the leaked letters did not come from Sars.

FILE: Suspended Sars Commissioner Tom Moyane. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – South African Revenue Services (Sars) Commissioner Tom Moyane has asked Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan to explain the leakage of confidential letters from his office, reiterating that his relationship with the minister is not ideal.

The Mail & Guardian on Friday published details of 16 confidential letters that expose the true extent of the war between Moyane and Gordhan.

Moyane has conceded that his relationship with the minister has been strained but insists that the leaked letters did not come from Sars.

“The minister should explain or investigate the leakages from his office. The letters in question were privilege and confidential documents and were only shared with Minister of Finance.

“It’s important to consider that the relationship between the Commissioner for Sars and the Minister of Finance is not ideal, it has its own peculiar challenges.”

Moyane briefed the media in Pretoria earlier on Friday, following Gordhan’s 2017 budget speech on Wednesday.

The minister told the National Assembly that Sars will collect R30 billion less than projected last year, calling it the largest under performance since the 2009 recession.

Moyane said it’s regrettable that statement comes from the minister.

“Such utterances by a person as senior as the Minister of Finance poses serious challenges to the overall credibility of the revenue service as an institution.”

Moyane said there are reasons for the decline in revenue collection.

“First, Custom duties were dragged down by R6.5 billion as a result of a contraction in real terms in imports. Second value added tax similarly was dragged down by import VAT collections to an underperformance by R11.3 billion.

“Finally personal income tax, which was long the anchor of revenue collections, underperformed by R15.2 billion.”

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)

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