Former president Jacob Zuma defended the public protector's right to access his tax records in a series of tweets on Tuesday afternoon.
Zuma was supposed to appear before the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture this week, but excused himself due to illness.
Still, he has been busy on Twitter, defending public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane who is currently in a legal battle with SARS commissioner Edward Kieswetter.
Last week, Sars launched an urgent court bid to prevent public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane from getting Zuma's tax information. Mkhwebane struck back with a notice of intention to oppose the application.
Zuma tweeted that he heard about the case, but "no one has consulted me about this matter".
"If the Public Protector wants to see my SARS records she is free to do so. We should not make the job of the PP difficult. If she wants my records, she must have them," Zuma tweeted.
In October, Mkhwebane was issued a subpoena to obtain Zuma's taxpayer information, the publication reported.
She is investigating a 2017 complaint from the DA that Zuma allegedly received undeclared money from a security company during (at least) the first four months of his presidency.
The claim was first made in Jacques Pauw's book The President’s Keepers, which alleged that Zuma received R1m a month from Royal Security, a company owned by Roy Moodley. Pauw wrote that neither Zuma, nor Moodley, declared these payments to SARS.
Business Day reported that SARS reportedly wants the high court to rule that it can withhold taxpayer information from the public protector.
I need to clarify that I have never refused the office of the PP access to investigate my affairs. This country knows very well that the former PP @ThuliMadonsela3 investigated me on a number of occasions and made findings against me.— Jacob G Zuma (@PresJGZuma) November 12, 2019
It must be known that I have nothing to hide. If the @PublicProtector wants to see my SARS records she is free to do so. We should not make the job of the PP difficult. If she wants my records, she must have them.— Jacob G Zuma (@PresJGZuma) November 12, 2019
Later on Tuesday evening, the office of the public protector tweeted in response to Zuma's comments:
THREAD: Thank you @PresJGZuma for weighing in on the matter. This case stems from PP @AdvBMkhwebane’s investigation of a 2017 Executive Members’ Ethics Act complaint by former DA leader and MP @MmusiMaimane https://t.co/vi7JKkheNi— Public Protector SA (@PublicProtector) November 12, 2019
Compiled by Helena Wasserman and Sarah Evans