Lackay had intentions to leave SARS, CCMA hears

2017-11-06 21:29
Adrian Lackay. (Cornél van Heerden, Netwerk24)

Adrian Lackay. (Cornél van Heerden, Netwerk24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg – Former South African Revenue Services spokesperson Adrian Lackay has always had intentions of leaving the service, the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) heard on Monday.

“He [Lackay] had intentions to leave SARS. He was a person who did not care at all and he anticipated he might be compromised at the end of the day and might have to leave,” Advocate Wisane Sibuyi argued during the final day of oral submissions at the CCMA in Johannesburg.

Lackay has opened a constructive dismissal case against SARS.

But Sibuyi, who represents SARS argued that Lackay wanted to leave and that the case could therefore not be treated as a constructive dismissal.

"Nobody was pushing him out [but] he had distanced himself from the institution.

“He [Lackay] conceded that he never complained formally to anybody... SARS’ position is that what Lackay has been telling the public is not correct."

ALSO READ: Former SARS spokesperson was never identified as a ‘problem’, CCMA hears

He said emails belonging to Lackay, dated November 13, 2014, were crucial in the matter.

In the emails, Lackay stated that his time at SARS was coming to an end, he said.

"If he decided to resign we cannot be talking about constructive dismissal," Sibuyi said.

He asked that the matter be dismissed with costs.  

Unbearable working conditions

Lackay worked at SARS for 11 years and resigned in February 2015 when he felt he could no longer be associated with what had been happening at the revenue service.

He previously testified that he felt side-lined and added that he was concerned SARS had advertised two communications officer jobs - one equivalent to his job.

Lackay also argued that SARS commissioner Tom Moyane changed offices, making himself inaccessible and that Lackay was increasingly left out of the loop on important events at SARS.

These included the suspensions of deputy commissioner Ivan Pillay, at a time when – as the spokesperson of the organisation – he was bombarded with queries from the media.

Lackay has asked for a year's salary as compensation.

The CCMA also heard that his working conditions became unbearable amid allegations that an illegal rogue spy unit had been set up by senior officials.


Advocate Paul Pretorius, SC, representing Lackay, argued that the service made work intolerable for Lackay.

"Much more was taken away from Lackay. SARS was unfair. He could no longer endure his working relationship," he said.   

Pretorius argued that there was no evidence that Moyane made attempts at good working conditions.

Moyane should have testified before the commission, however, he failed to make himself available, he said.

READ: Tom Moyane avoids testifying at CCMA

"Moyane should have come to you, madam and said: 'There is a reasonable and proper cause to what I have done.' But he did not make himself far as Moyane was concerned, Lackay was a problem," Pretorius said.

Advocate Richard Moultrie, who also represents Lackay, told the CCMA that SARS was “petty and spiteful and behaved in a way that Lackay thought it would”.

“His fears of what would happen, had he laid a grievance, would have been perfectly justified,” Moultrie said.

CCMA commissioner Joyce Nkopane is expected to make her decision later this month.

Read more on:    ccma  |  sars  |  adrian lackay  |  tom moyane

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.