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Sars IT boss Mmamathe Makhekhe-Mokhuane suspended

21 August 2019 - 13:01 By timeslive
Mmamathe Makhekhe-Mokhuane during a bizarre interview with the SABC in 2018. At one point she asked the presenter: 'Mam, can you give me protection from yourself?'
Mmamathe Makhekhe-Mokhuane during a bizarre interview with the SABC in 2018. At one point she asked the presenter: 'Mam, can you give me protection from yourself?'
Image: Twitter/Sochangane

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) said on Wednesday it had placed IT executive Mmamathe Makhekhe-Mokhuane on precautionary suspension pending the finalisation of a disciplinary process.

The process relates to "serious allegations of misconduct", the tax entity said, without elaborating.

Makhekhe-Mokhuane was placed on "indefinite leave" in April.

The chief officer for digital, information and technology services at Sars was in the social media spotlight over her utterances on television in October 2018 and at the Nugent commission of inquiry, where she took flak for being vague when answering questions.

Makhekhe-Mokhuane asked the presenter of SABC’s Morning Live during an interview: “Mam, can you give me protection from yourself?”

She had been talking about outsourcing and bursary systems at Sars when presenter Sakina Kamwendo said: "But we're talking about IT restructuring." She made the statement in response.

Sars said  Makhekhe-Mokhuane was one of five executives currently on precautionary suspension.

The others are:

  • Hlengani Mathebula, chief officer (CO) for governance, international relations, strategy and communications
  • Teboho Mokoena, CO for human capital & development
  • Luther Lebelo, group executive for employee relations
  • Refiloe Mokoena, CO: legal counsel.

"This is part of an ongoing comprehensive review of the whole Sars leadership by the commissioner (Edward Kieswetter) in terms of good governance and, further, in response to the report on the Commission of Inquiry into Tax Administration and Governance by Sars, [the Nugent Report],” said the Sars statement.

Makhekhe-Mokhuane’s precautionary suspension takes effect immediately.

SARS noted: "It must be reiterated that these suspensions are precautionary and as such do not amount to findings of any wrongdoing ... A determination in this regard will be made only on the finalisation of the process."

Sars said the entity "requests that the privacy of the individuals concerned and the confidentiality of the employer–employee relationship be respected and would not comment further on the matter until it is concluded.


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