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News & Press: Opinion

Tax Ombud considering online database

27 January 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Author: Ingé Lamprecht
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Author:  Ingé Lamprecht (Moneywebtax)

The office of the recently established Tax Ombud may set up an online database where some of its findings will be accessible to the public in a generic format in due course.

Saro Persaud, executive in the office of the Tax Ombud, says the Tax Ombud is considering the idea of an online database, but it will be subject to Chapter 6 of the Tax Administration Act (TAA), which requires that taxpayer information should be protected and remain confidential.

"Although the data included in such a database will be subject to privacy and confidentiality laws, as the Office of the Tax Ombud's institutional capacity becomes more established, the documenting of generic case studies for public access will be undertaken," she says.

Following the establishment of the office headed by retired judge Bernard Ngoepe late last year, questions have been asked about whether the office findings will be accessible.

In terms of the TAA, the Tax Ombud will have to prepare an annual report and submit it to the Minister of Finance who will table it in the National Assembly. The TAA states that the report must contain a summary of at least ten of the most serious issues encountered by taxpayers and identify systematic and emerging issues. It should also include a description of the nature of the issues.

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Section 240A of the Tax Administration Act, 2011 (as amended) requires that all tax practitioners register with a recognized controlling body before 1 July 2013. It is a criminal offense to not register with both a recognized controlling body and SARS.


The Act requires that a minimum academic and practical requirments be set to register with a controlling body. Click here for the minimum requirements of SAIT.

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