File picture: Ziphozonke Lushaba, Independent Media
PRETORIA - SA Revenue Services (SARS) commissioner Tom Moyane says former Sars employees were disciplined based on the Sikhakhane commission’s report and not based on KPMG report on the alleged “spy unit” at Sars.

Moyane was speaking on Monday following the audit firm KPMG’s decision to withdraw its findings and recommendations into the “spy unit” at Sars.

He said it was unlawful and unethical of KPMG to withdraw the report when the report was rubber-stamped by the firm as ethical and that its content was trustworthy.

Former SARS employees including former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan have publicly stated that the they were surprised by KPMG’s decision to withdraw its findings and have asked for an apology.

But Moyane has criticized the former employees for being quick to claim innocence and said some of them had even confessed to him on their role in the alleged “spy unit”.

He said the employees were disciplined based on a report by the Sikhakhane commission and not based on the KPMG report.

Moyane also announced that SARS plans to take legal action against KPMG for reputational damage.

He said this sudden decision presents an imagine that SARS is untrustworthy - which damages its reputation.

The series of actions that SARS plans to take against KPMG include; civil claim, reporting KPMG to relevant statutory bodies in SA and internationally, reporting the firm to Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba with the aim of blacklisting the company.

Moyane said SARS will also write to Gigaba with the aim of ensuring that KPMG does not do work with other departments.

SARS will also assess the work that KPMG has done for them over the past  10 years and also  report the firm to Parliament.