Look, at this point is doesn’t even matter whether Zuma makes a deal to leave the presidency behind or not… nobody in the ANC can protect him from the mountain of legal battles waiting for him.
In yet another investigation into the president’s dodgy Nkandla deals, the South African Revenue Service (Sars) has confirmed that it is looking into Zuma’s tax liability with regards to fringe benefits on the upgrades to his compound in KZN.
While Sars’ Advocate Neo Tsholanku told the standing committee on public accounts (Scopa) that the process is ongoing, DA MP Alf believes there should have been much more progress on the matter by now.
“The DA will now write to SARS Commissioner Tom Moyane, to ask for a firm commitment to a timeline for the completion of this investigation,” Lees said.
DA leader Mmusi Maimane previously wrote to Zuma, asking whether the president had, in fact, paid fringe benefits tax – which the DA calculated to be around R64 million – on the upgrades to the Zuma compound. Needless to say, Zuma refused to comment.
“The issue of tax is a confidential matter between the South African Revenue Services and the taxpayer,” the presidency wrote in response.
Following the president’s embarrassing defeat in the Constitutional Court, which ruled that he had broken the law and essentially lied about the upgrades to his private Nkandla home, the president paid a measly R7.8 million as recompense for the non-security upgrades to the property.
Unfortunately, Zuma’s cabal hadn’t anticipated the fringe benefit cost attached to the upgrades.
According to Fin24, Lees slammed Sars’ attitude towards the investigation, and payment of the fringe tax benefits, after Tsholanku told Scopa: “our auditors are working as fast as they can.”
“However, the reality is that it has been three years since the DA first called on SARS, in March 2014, to assess the extent of the president’s Nkandla fringe benefits,” Lees said.
“Tsholanku’s excuse won’t do. SARS cannot think that South Africans must simply accept a massive delay in enforcing Jacob Zuma’s tax liability. For three years Zuma has gotten away with evading paying tax on his palace of corruption – but that time is up.”
“It is complete nonsense for SARS to cry ‘complex processes’ and ‘our auditors are working as fast as they can’ after being aware of the non-security upgrades for a full three years since the matter was exposed by the DA.”