Fears that the South African Revenue Service (SARS) had fallen prey to state capture were heightened after its chief financial officer of nearly three years abruptly resigned this week.  Matsobane Matlwa, a long-time SARS insider, was appointed CFO in December 2014. He was instrumental in establishing the Large Business Centre, which he ran for five years from 2004. The unit monitored high-earning taxpayers such as Dave King as well as corporate taxpayers. SARS's credibility has been called into question since Tom Moyane - who is close to President Jacob Zuma - was appointed three years ago. Highly trained investigators who had exposed syndicates and collected billions in unpaid value-added tax and other taxes left the system after Moyane undertook a restructuring drive that pitted him against former finance minister Pravin Gordhan. He disbanded the national projects team, which conducted in-depth investigations, claiming there was an undercover rogue unit. Insiders had also previou...

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