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Sars looking into Nkandla tax issue

2014-04-03 12:56
(Giordano Stolley, Sapa)

Johannesburg - The SA Revenue Service (Sars) will deal with a DA request to look into President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla tax issue, the party said on Wednesday.

It said this emerged from a copy of a letter by Sars commissioner Ivan Pillay to Democratic Alliance MP Tim Harris.

He wrote that Sars could not disclose information about a specific taxpayer due to secrecy provisions in the Tax Administration Act, including whether the taxpayer was subject to an audit.

"However, I can assure you that the matter will be dealt with in the normal course of the duties and functions assigned to Sars for the purpose of the administration of the tax laws."

The DA said this was a clear indication that Sars would not treat Zuma differently from any other citizen.

Fringe benefits

Harris reported the matter to Sars after calculating that Zuma could owe around R16.8m for the fringe benefits he received from the R246m spent on his private Nkandla home in KwaZulu-Natal.

Last month, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found Zuma and his family unduly benefited from security upgrades to the homestead and recommended that he pay back a percentage of the non-security upgrades.

The DA said though Madonsela did not specify how much Zuma owed for the non-security upgrades, the opposition party conservatively calculated it could be worth around R52.8m.

This was way beyond the R10.6m the public works department had to allocate to Zuma's "private account", it said.

"We believe the president should repay the full amount spent for his private benefit, but even if he only pays the R10.6m specified by public works, the excess - as a fringe benefit - may trigger a liability of R16.8m in tax payable," the DA said.

"The president must pay the tax he owes."

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Read more on: da  |  sars  |  tim harris  |  jacob zuma  |  nkandla upgrade  |  politics

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