I want to bring back public trust and confidence in Sars, says Kieswetter

President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed Edward Kieswetter as the new Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (Sars).

Read: Ramaphosa appoints Edward Kieswetter as new Sars Commissioner

The president appointed Kieswetter on the recommendation of a panel led by Finance Minister Tito Mboweni.

The new commissioner is a former CEO of the Alexander Forbes Group and also served as deputy commissioner under Pravin Gordhan between 2004 and 2009.

Kieswetter speaks to Ray White on #702Breakfast about his new role and whether he expected the appointment.

Since the decisionmaker is the president, no one knows until the president makes the decision. I had a hint earlier on that I was being considered and I was invited to meet the panel and from then on, I knew that I was one of the candidates.

Edward Kieswetter, New Sars Commissioner

He adds that in his quest to turn Sars around, he will prioritise staff.

People are the most important, everything starts and ends with people. You can imagine in a time like this when everything you read about your organisation in the press is demoralising.

Edward Kieswetter, New Sars Commissioner

For me, the most important thing will be to engage with the thousands of hard-working men and women who work for Sars, ensure they are committed and to make sure that the work Mark Kingon has done is continued and that certainty is restored at Sars.

Edward Kieswetter, New Sars Commissioner

He says he will build on from where Kingon left off and ensure that they can restore confidence in the organisation and respect in the leadership.

The other side of the work ahead is to build trust and confidence in the public. No revenue service will do its work effectively if it doesn't have co-operation from the public.

Edward Kieswetter, New Sars Commissioner

Kieswetter shares a message to South Africans who are not paying their taxes.

We need active citizens in order to make our democracy work and therefore our obligations are to pay our taxes.

Edward Kieswetter, New Sars Commissioner

He says it is unfortunate that the Sars strike is happening in the last week of the financial year.

I hope we can resolve this adequately, amicable and as soon as possible.

Edward Kieswetter, New Sars Commissioner

Listen below to the full interview with the new commissioner:


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