Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene announced that he has appointed an advisory committee headed by a retired judge to help resolve the woes of the SA Revenue Service (Sars).
Nene made the announcement shortly before tabling his first main budget in the National Assembly, for 2015/16, and said the committee would be headed by retired Judge Frank Kroon.
“Our biggest interest is to restore the integrity of the institution, while matters that need to be addressed continue to be addressed,” he told a media briefing.
“In terms of section 11 of the South African Revenue Service Act, the minister may appoint an advisory committee to advise him on matters that relate to governance and organisational arrangements,” said Nene, who was flanked by Sars Commissioner Tom Monyane.
“We therefore have taken a decision to appoint this committee, working with the commissioner, and I have just had a conversation with the retired judge who is going to be leading this committee to take over this task, in order to remove this from personalities.”
Nene said unlike his predecessor Pravin Gordhan, who had served as SARS commissioner, he had no experience of working for the revenue service.
“It was seen as prudent to appoint somebody who would deal with the task [and] advise both of us and assure that the integrity of the institution is restored.”
“Judge Frank has agreed to take on this task.”
He said the terms of reference of the committee had been drafted and he was in consultation with the justice department on appointing its other members.
Kroon retired from the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court in 2011.
SARS has been destabilised by allegations of a “rogue intelligence” unit in its ranks and the suspensions and departures of several senior executives.