Former SARS commissioner Tom Moyane has weighed in on the
so-called rogue unit, which he said several investigators found to be
established illegally and performed illegal activities.
Moyane on Saturday tweeted that he wanted to provide clarity
on why he lodged a criminal complaint about the so-called rogue unit. In a word
document titled ‘The SARS Rogue Unit and Project Sunday Evenings’, which Moyane
posted on Twitter, he laid out a sequence of events which led to him launching
the criminal case.
Moyane also confirmed to Fin24 by phone on Sunday that he posted the document on his Twitter account.
As far back as April/May 2015, Moyane said he was approached
by two SARS employees who demanded to speak to him urgently. “They were a
bit belligerent and in a high state of panic,” he said of the employees.
Moyane said they confessed to illegally installing 15
“state of the art, needle pin size” cameras in the offices of the SA
Police Service and the National Prosecuting Authority, on the instructions of
their manager. Moyane said the employees were given R1.15m by an
official from the Scorpions for the installation.
The content from the cameras would be downloaded and
transcribed every Sunday evening, in what became known as “Project Sunday
evenings”. Moyane said the employees provided him proof of illegal recordings and
confirmed illegal spying activities of “prominent” South Africans. “They
further said that the plan was to control and decide who wins the internal ANC
elections in Polokwane between former presidents, Mr Zuma and Mbeki,”
After seeking legal advice, Moyane said he was advised to
open a criminal case with the police.
“I have seen and touched the spying equipments (sic)
such as cellphone hammers and others used by the rogue unit,” Moyane said.
“I thought it was wise that I put this on record and
dispel this nefarious and maliciously falsified narrative. This (sic) actions
and others that I will share with you in time intensified the fight against me,
but it’s okay,” he said.
As for his thoughts on the rogue unit, Moyane said that
several panels of investigators including Advocate Sikhakhane, SARS’ advisory
board and the Public Protector have found that SARS illegally established the
unit which also performed illegal activities like spying on on citizens. “That Rogue Unit
existed in SARS and committed illegal activities,” he said.
However, Moyane did not mention the findings of Judge Robert
Nugent’s commission of inquiry into SARS.
Nugent said that allegations of the unit
was not the primary focus of the inquiry, but he considered the unit in the
commission’s final report handed over to President Cyril Ramaphosa in December
“I have not yet found why the creation and existence of
the unit was said to have been unlawful, which is how it was consistently and
“I find no reason why the establishment and existence
of the unit was indeed unlawful, and I am supported in that by an opinion given
to Mr Moyane by leading senior counsel in late 2015. As far as I am aware that opinion
has never been publicly disclosed. It might be that some of the activities of
one or more of its six members was unlawful but that is something else,”
Nugent said of the rogue unit.
Meanwhile, Public Enterprise Minister Pravin Gordhan – who
was SARS commissioner at the time the rogue unit was established – is seeking a
review of Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s findings that the establishment
of the unit was unlawful.
Ramaphosa has also filed a supporting affidavit to Gordhan’s application. Gordhan wants
the court to set aside Mkhwebane’s remedial orders. Former SARS deputy commissioner Ivan Pillay is seeking his own review of Mkhwebane’s report, he associates with the points raised by Gordhan and has made additionl points in his application Fin24 reported previously.
EFF leader Julius Malema has in turn filed an application
for the courts to dismiss Gordhan’s application with costs. The EFF had
originally lodged the complaint about the rogue unit with the Public Protector.