Suspended Sars boss Tom Moyane is preparing to go to war with President Cyril Ramaphosa, and wants to take him to court over his suspension.
The Sunday Times reported that, according to Moyane's lawyer Eric Mabuza, Moyane believes Ramaphosa had already made up his mind about suspending him before confronting him during a meeting at Ramaphosa's house on March 18, where the president allegedly "shouted" at Moyane.
Specifically, the president apparently wanted to know about claims that Sars illegally paid out a R70 million VAT refund to the Guptas via a third party. Ramaphosa also apparently questioned Moyane over his handling of the claims against his former deputy, Jonas Makwakwa, who is accused of receiving dubious payments.
Ramaphosa reportedly asked Moyane how things could work "when his 'second in command' was seen stuffing money into an ATM machine", according to Mabuza. When Moyane told Ramaphosa that he had no second in command and that he was the only one in charge at Sars, Ramaphsa reportedly retorted, "Whatever".
According to the Sunday Times, Ramaphosa reportedly asked Moyane about the Gupta refund allegations, and when he said he had nothing to do with it, Ramaphosa apparently told him he had lost confidence in him and told him to resign. Moyane later refused and was suspended by the president.
The nine-page charge sheet against Moyane reportedly outlines various allegations against him, including his "gross mishandling" of the Makwakwa allegations.
In response, the presidency's Khusela Diko told the Sunday Times that any issues Moyane has with the process will be handled during his disciplinary hearing, and that the presidency would not be commenting on Moyane's account of events.
Moyane was formally charged on Friday, reported MoneyWeb. The presidency said at the time that the charges relate to "alleged leadership and organisational failures".
According to the Daily Maverick, one of the issues likely to come up at his disciplinary is his unilateral payout of R3 million in bonuses to his executive committee, including a R930 00o bonus paid to Makwakwa while he was on suspension. This was reportedly the basis of a fight between Moyane and then-finance minister Pravin Gordhan, who would not approve the bonuses.
It is also alleged that Moyane and his head of legal, Refiloe Mokoena ignored several "red flags" when approving the payments to the Guptas, possibly aiding money laundering and fraud.