Suspended Sars Commissioner Tom Moyane. File picture: ANA
CAPE TOWN - Retired Judge Robert Nugent has turned down grant rulings that were requested by suspended SARS Commissioner Tom Moyane through Advocate Dali Mpofu in regards to the Sars Commision that Moyane is involved in at the Wynberg Magistrate's Court.

Moyane's attorney Eric Mabuza said that he will be writing to President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday. According to Mabuza, they are willing to go all the way to get help from the courts if the matters were not cleared up.

On Friday, Mpofu looked to sort out issues that he called proof of bias and injustice in regards to how the commission was handling their work. However, the advocate did not tackle the merits of various serious allegations that came up from witnesses before the commission.

The suspended commissioner sought to have Nugent rule on five issues:

1. The termination of the Commission or a say of its proceedings until the results of the disciplinary inquiry are known.
2. All the evidence that was heard during the first three days of the public hearings be erased from the record due to it being acquired under a cloud of "unlawfulness and procedural unlawfulness".
3. Professor Michael Katz be recused as a member of the panel
4. An undertaking that the commission will not think about any evidence in regard to any subject matter which may be a part of the disciplinary.
5. An order that Sars must provide the necessary legal help to the Commissioner to use his rights.

The retired judge called the submission document disgraceful and turned down the rulings that Moyane was seeking. According to Nugent, he does have the authority to ask Katz to recuse himself or to give any undertaking in terms of the evidence that might relate to matters in the disciplinary.

Nugent added that it was "not competent in law" for him to erase any evidence or instruct Sars to provide Moyane with assistance.

According to the suspended commissioner, Katz is in a conflict of interest because he has acted as President Ramaphosa's attorney in various matters. The President suspended Moyane this year saying that he lost confidence in the Moyane's leadership of Sars.

Moyane held the position of Sars Commissioner since September 2014.

Sars has confirmed that they will not be paying for Moyane's legal representation. Although he is not in the centre of the inquiry, evidence from the inquiry paints a picture of fear during his time as commissioner.

According to Nugent's notes in his ruling, the retired judged called on anyone including Moyane to make a submission to the commission if they believe that any of the evidence presented is false.

The disciplinary investigation has been halted after Pravin Gordhan, the former Finance Minister filed an affidavit that detailed the charges against Moyane last month.

Sars tax season

The 2018 tax filing season was officially opened on Monday. According to Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene, the government is committed to stabilising the South African Revenue Service to a credible operation.

The tax season for people who eFile opened on Sunday while Sars offices across the country started accepting submissions on Monday with the tax season being shortened this year.

Recently, Sars announced that they will be removing documents like income tax returns and drop boxes in an effort to encourage more people to start eFiling.

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