SA Revenue Service welcomes tax administration inquiry

South African Revenue Service (Sars) logo. PHOTO: Supplied

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) on Monday welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s pledge to launch a Commission of Inquiry into tax administration and governance at Sars. 

During his maiden State-of-the-Nation Address (Sona) on Friday, Ramaphosa said he would shortly appoint a Commission of Inquiry into Tax Administration and Governance of Sars in a bid to ensure that we restore the credibility of the service and strengthen its capacity to meet its revenue targets.

“We will also take steps to stabilise and strengthen vital institutions like the South African Revenue Service,” Ramaphosa said at the time.

“We must understand that tax morality is dependent on an implicit contract between taxpayers and government that state spending provides value for money and is free from corruption.”

In a statement, Sars said that it was committed to its role as an efficient and effective tax authority that collects revenue to support government’s developmental agenda.

“True to this commitment, Sars will cooperate fully with the inquiry as soon as the terms of reference are finalised and received from the Presidency or National Treasury,” it said.

“Sars is looking forward to the inquiry as this will assist Sars employees and its leadership to identify additional areas which seek focus and improvement.”

At the centre of administration and governance issues at Sars is its Commissioner Tom Moyane, who is accused of shielding corrupt officials and assisting the controversial Gupta family former president Jacob Zuma in tax evasion.

Sars said that the inquiry would assist in clarifying a number of misconstrued issues, including dispelling the perception and continued negative media narrative that has the potential to dent the legitimacy of the organisation.

“The next six weeks is the most critical for Sars and the country as we strive to attain and surpass the R1.214-trillion revenue target set in October’s Medium Term Budget Policy Statement,” Sars said.

 – African News Agency (ANA)