New SARS head receives thumbs up from tax industry
23 October 2014
Posted by: Author: Evan Pickworth
Author: Evan Pickworth (BDlive)
Jacob Zuma’s choice of Thomas Moyane as Commissioner of the South African
Revenue Services (SARS) fills a gaping hole left after Oupa Magashula resigned
in the aftermath of a scandal in July last year.
Mr Moyane is a development economist by training rather than a tax expert, the
professional tax industry welcomed his appointment as he is seen as experienced
and well connected enough at national level to bring about change. He will have
the unenviable task of trying to rebuild trust in SARS following a string of
SARS Commissioner Ivan Pillay took over from Mr Magashula in an acting
capacity, but he has never wanted to take on the role full time despite
receiving plaudits for the job he has done. Mr Pillay’s contract initially came
up for renewal in October last year, but the president failed to announce a
full-time commissioner, leaving SARS operating with an acting head for more
than a year.
executive of the South African Institute of Tax Practitioners — the largest
body of tax professionals in the country — Stiaan Klue said on Tuesday the fact
that Mr Moyane had significant experience as a commissioner at national level
would be more important than his technical tax skills.
actually don’t want a technocrat in this job, but rather someone who can
listen. It is good it is someone from the outside — SARS needed new blood and a
new broom," he said.
has served as National Commissioner at the Department of Correctional Services,
as chief executive officer for the Government Printing Works, as managing
director for Engen Mozambique as well as regional coordinator for the regional
spatial development initiatives and as chief director for industry and
enterprise development at the department of trade and industry.
need SARS to be strong — citizens are looking to it as a model government
department we can trust, especially after recent scandals. These things
directly affected tax morale," said Mr Klue.
Commissioner Mr Magashula resigned following an investigation into allegations
of impropriety against him.
new scandal hits SARS last month after reports surfaced about the alleged affair
between one of their enforcement bosses and a lawyer in the tobacco industry.
The tobacco industry is being investigated by SARS. While the mudslinging in
this case continues, the tax industry has felt this is just another example of
bad public relations SARS could ill afford.
is a vital cornerstone of SA’s fiscal order and security, and Mr Moyane’s vast
experience at the highest levels of government and public administration stand
him in good stead in ensuring SARS continues to serve the best interests of the
South African economy," said Mr Klue.
South African Institute of Tax Professionals said "a debt of
gratitude" was owed to Mr Pillay. "He needs to be commended for the
stability and professionalism he instilled within SARS during his tenure as
acting commissioner," said Mr Klue.
This article first appeared on bdlive.co.za.