Van Loggerenberg tells Zondo Inquiry Moyane left Sars officials to the wolves

Former Sars executive Johann van Loggerenberg said Moyane seemed to accept the reports on the alleged rogue elements in Sars as true and failed to launch any internal investigation into the allegations.

FILE: Johann van Loggerenberg addresses the media outside the Hawks building. Picture: Thomas Holder/Eyewitness News.

CAPE TOWN – Former South African Revenue Service (Sars) executive Johann van Loggerenberg has told the state capture inquiry that former commissioner Tom Moyane failed to protect the institution or its people when they came under attack with false stories in the media about rogue elements within the organisation.

Instead, he said Moyane seemed to accept the reports as true and failed to launch any internal investigation into the allegations while, at the same time, preventing any of the individuals implicated from putting their side of the story.

READ: Sars under Tom Moyane was a nightmare Symington tells Zondo Inquiry

On Thursday, Van Loggerenerg described how Sars built up its ability to combat the illicit economy, including organised crime and the illegal trade in tobacco, alcohol, and drugs.

He said this saw a pushback by criminal syndicates and individuals that included death threats, murder and assaults and culminated in leaks to the media by state intelligence operatives of dossiers alleging wrongdoing on the part of Sars officials.

Evidence leader Alistair Franklin took Van Loggerenberg through his testimony.

“What you have said is this: Sars lost any semblance of countering the attacks I have described from end of September 2014 when the appointment of then-commissioner Tom Moyane was announced by former President Jacob Zuma out of the blue and he took office almost immediately. Almost overnight, when Tom Moyane took over, the public attacks on Sars and its officials ran unabated and Moyane did absolutely nothing to defend Sars or allow people in Sars who were able to defend Sars and its officials and work to do so – in fact he prohibited this emphatically.”

Van Loggerenberg, who was the group executive in charge of tax and customs enforcement investigations when he resigned 2015, said the attacks seemed to suit Moyane as he set about restructuring the agency.

"As soon as Mr moyane arrived, the stories started… we didn’t just say we want to help, we said in no uncertain terms 'this is wrong, this is false, there is an attack' – I used the words – 'the institution is under attack'. He didn’t speak to a single one of us.”

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