Gordhan to probe Sars 'hostage' incident

Sars says it will investigate the matter, while Ipid has confirmed it is investigating a case of kidnapping following the incident last week.

FILE: Former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan says he will probe claims of a reported hostage situation at the South African Revenue Service (Sars).

Yesterday, Gordhan addressed Parliament on his medium-term budget policy statement, where he was also questioned about the incident at the Sars office.

The Mail & Guardian is reporting that it's seen cellphone clips of an altercation between Sars employee Vlok Symington, Hawks officials and Sars Commissioner Tom Moyane's body guard, who apparently forced Symington to give up a document in his possession.

It’s understood Moyane had emailed him the document by mistake and it proved that a Sars lawyer disagreed with the decision to prosecute the Finance Minister.

Gordhan says he will take up the issue with Moyane.

“The incident at Sars, I heard whispers about it to be frank. I have no formal report yet. I haven’t had the chance to look at it and I will Mr Moyane for an explanation as soon as I get a chance. If this is true, it’s unacceptable behaviour.”

Sars says it will investigate the issue where its members are concerned.

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It has emerged that the Hawks wanted the document from Symington because they were concerned it would be leaked to the media.

Ipid has confirmed it is investigating a case of kidnapping following the incident last week.

Symington stated clearly that he was being held against his will.

“Talk to me, why am I being kept against my will? Excuse me, I’m being kept against my will,“ he said.

The Hawks officials forcefully took the document from him and explained why they were concerned.

Sars has not explained why commissioner Moyane’s bodyguard helped the Hawks retrieve the document.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)