Strong panel to shortlist new SARS Commissioner welcomed – Alf Lees

DA MP urges panel to start interviews without delay, and to be very thorough

DA welcomes strong panel to shortlist new SARS Commissioner

7 February 2019

The DA welcomes the appointment of a strong panel headed by Trevor Manuel to interview and recommend to Cyril Ramaphosa, the President of the Republic of South Africa, a shortlist of candidates for the position of the Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (SARS).

We welcome the emphasis placed by Ramaphosa on the application of recommendations that emanated from the Nugent Commission. These recommendations are that the persons appointed to a selection panel “…should be apolitical and not answerable to any constituency, and should be persons of high standing who are able to inspire confidence across the tax-paying spectrum.” The Commission also proposed criteria against which shortlisted candidates for the SARS Commissioner post should be evaluated for suitability, and this has also been emphasized by President Ramaphosa.

The new SARS Commissioner will be faced with a daunting task of rebuilding SARS based on the good work already done by the Acting Commissioner over the past year since Tom Moyane was removed from SARS. The Nugent Commission has done a considerable amount of work to establish what went wrong at SARS, as well as with making recommendations on action to be taken. This work will be of great assistance to the new SARS Commissioner in the task of rebuilding taxpayer morality. It will go a long way to ensure that tax evasion and criminality is dealt with more robustly, and that tax laws are applied to all without fear or favour.

The DA urges the panel appointed to interview and recommend a new SARS Commissioner to start interviews without delay, and to be very thorough in the interview process and due diligence checks of each candidate. The recommended candidate must be a candidate of merit and the panel must ensure that there are no blemishes to the candidate’s record.

Issued by Alf LeesDA Shadow Deputy Minister of Finance, 7 February 2019