SARS official who helped Pravin now faces dismissal

The man who got Pravin Gordhan off the hook‚ SARS adviser Vlok Symington‚ is facing dismissal for his role in revealing how the Hawks created trumped up charges against the former finance minister.

In October‚ Symington made headlines when he was held in a SARS boardroom against his will by Hawks officials and Tom Moyane’s bodyguard. He was refusing to hand over documents relating to the fraud charges against Gordhan.

Symington has filed papers at the high court in Pretoria asking that the court prevent SARS from firing or harassing him for his disclosures to the Independent Police Directorate and the NPA. He is using the Protected Disclosures Act‚ which protects whistleblowers who leak information relating to their knowledge of possible crimes.

Symington’s disclosures revealed how SARS and the Hawks conspired to withhold documentation from the NPA that would have prevented them from charging Gordhan.

The NPA charged Gordhan with fraud for approving an early retirement payout to SARS commissioner Ivan Pillay. In 2009‚ Symington‚ a legal pension expert‚ said SARS advised in writing that it was lawful for Pillay to retire early and access his pension

This document was kept in various files at SARS.

It was this document that was kept from the NPA but eventually revealed by the Helen Suzman Foundation and Freedom under Law’s action that forced the NPA to drop charges against Gordhan.

In Symington’s legal papers he states: “It appears that Gordhan and [Mcebisi] Jonas were an obstacle to those parties involved in state capture and that efforts were made to discredit them or remove from office.”

In Symington’s legal papers he states: “It appears that Gordhan and [Mcebisi] Jonas were an obstacle to those parties involved in state capture and that efforts were made to discredit them or remove from office.”

When Symington was held against his will in a boardroom at SARS by Tom Moyane’s bodyguard for refusing to hand over documents‚ he filmed the drama.

When he tried to leave the room‚ the Hawks staff snatched the papers from him and bruised him.

But he had accidently caught the documents on his cell phone camera in the tussle.

The documents showed SARS own legal adviser refused to be involved in charging Pravin Gordhan for fraud for ethical reasons

It means some people at SARS knew Gordhan’s decision to allow Pillay to retire was legal and there was no basis for the charges.

In his papers he says: “SARS and the HAWKS were fully aware of the memorandum long before 11 October 2016 (the date) Gordhan was charged.

“SARS and or The Hawks deliberately concealed this from NPA providing a solid pretext for his removal as Finance Minister.”

“SARS and or The Hawks deliberately concealed this from NPA providing a solid pretext for his removal as Finance Minister.”

Vlok reported this and the conduct of Moyane’s bodyguard to the NPA and to IPID but nothing has happened.

Instead the investigation into Moyane’s bodyguard was turned against him and he was charged with misconduct.

According to the affidavit Symington was charged for “insubordination for refusing to respond to a lawful instruction issued by the SARS commissioner ( Moyane) and his line manager to return the documents to the Hawks.

Symington wants to remain at SARS where he has worked for more than 20 years.

By: Katharine Child

– TimesLIVE

Source: TMG Digital.

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