Natasha Marrian Political editor: Business Day
Tom Moyane. Picture: TREVOR SAMSON
Tom Moyane. Picture: TREVOR SAMSON

Suspended South African Revenue Service (SARS) commissioner Tom Moyane wants an affidavit by former finance minister Pravin Gordhan deemed "inadmissible and irrelevant" in the disciplinary hearing he is facing, chaired by advocate Azhar Bham.

Moyane also argued in a formal legal objection to the disciplinary inquiry being held against him that the procedure was "manifestly oppressive" as it excluded oral evidence, except in circumstances where the chairman of the inquiry required such representations.

The suspended SARS boss has responded to a 32-page affidavit to Bham by Gordhan on the three main charges he faces. These include gross misconduct and bringing SARS into disrepute.

He has not addressed any substantial issues or answered the allegations against him in both the disciplinary inquiry and in the commission of inquiry into governance and administration at SARS, chaired by retired Supreme Court judge Robert Nugent.

Instead, Moyane has argued against procedural technicalities in both inquiries and on Monday threatened court action.

The formal objection lodged with Bham on Friday asked for a ruling on the matter.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has rejected Moyane’s demand to have the disciplinary inquiry held orally.

Moyane’s attorney, Eric Mabuza, said the side-stepping of oral evidence was aimed at preventing Gordhan from being cross-examined by the inquiry.

In the formal objection to the disciplinary inquiry, which Business Day has seen, Moyane argues that Gordhan was not authorised to depose the affidavit. He argues that the evidence Gordhan provided was "inadmissible and irrelevant".

He describes Gordhan’s affidavit as "vague and embarrassing" and adds that it does not link in any way to Ramaphosa’s loss of confidence in Moyane.

In the objection, he also argues that Gordhan relied on documentation he was not legally entitled to possess, mainly because he was no longer finance minister.

The Presidency and the state attorney could not be reached for comment. Bham declined to comment on the matter.

The formal objection by Moyane to the procedure followed in his disciplinary inquiry will be heard on Saturday, July 21, Mabuza said on Tuesday.