Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: MIKE HUTCHINGS
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: MIKE HUTCHINGS

Axed SA Revenue Service (Sars) boss Tom Moyane will lodge an application to cross-examine public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan at the state capture inquiry.

Moyane and Gordhan have had an antagonistic relationship from the time Gordhan was finance minister.

Gordhan is testifying at the commission on Monday, where he will talk about his time as a cabinet minister under former president Jacob Zuma.

Gordhan served as finance minister twice and as co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister. During his second stint as finance minister, Gordhan butted heads with Moyane.

In his submission to the commission, which was leaked to the media, Gordhan said this was a difficult and challenging period, as the Treasury was under attack.

He said there was a ‘‘blatant refusal’’ by Moyane to account to Gordhan as minister. 

‘‘He even refused to acknowledge my authority on what may appear to be petty matters such as his applications for personal leave would not be submitted to the ministry (although during Nene's time as minister they were).

During his testimony at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture on November 19 2018, public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan relayed incidents that led him and other concerned parties into questioning the actions of the powers that be, and to try and reconstruct when the alleged state capture began.

‘‘He would claim that he obtained permission for leave from the presidency, which officials there would deny,’’ Gordhan said in his submission.

He said Moyane had also made ‘‘serious allegations’’ against Gordhan and continued to refute that as finance minister, the Sars commissioner was accountable and answerable to him. 

Gordhan also said Zuma did nothing to intervene in the deteriorating relationship, to facilitate adjudication of the dispute or to resolve it in a formal way.

He said there was an ‘‘evident lack of accountability’’ from Moyane.

On Monday, Moyane's legal representative, Dali Mpofu, told deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo, who heads the inquiry, that his client wanted to lodge an application to cross-examine Gordhan. 

Implicated parties are given an opportunity to approach Zondo to do this.

Moyane was fired as Sars boss by President Cyril Ramaphosa at the beginning of November. 

The legal representative of former national director of public prosecutions (NDPP) Shaun Abrahams also told Zondo that his client wanted to participate in the hearings, and reserved his right to make an application to cross-examine Gordhan or put his own version of events to the inquiry.

In his submission, Gordhan deals with the decision by the national prosecuting authority to charge him with fraud in relation to the early retirement of former deputy Sars commissioner Ivan Pillay. The charges were dropped by Abrahams after Gordhan made representations to him.

Abrahams was removed as NDPP early in 2018 after the Constitutional Court upheld a judgment that reviewed and set aside his appointment by Zuma.

quintalg@businesslive.co.za