By Umamah Bakharia
The High Court ruled that former president Jacob Zuma hand over tax information has prompted a public debate, arguing that the taxpayer’s confidentiality has been overlooked.
The Pretoria High Court granted amaBhungane and Financial Mail an application to access Zuma’s records for 2010 to 2018.
amaBhungane’s advocacy coordinator and attorney, Cherese Thakur says there is a misconception on the judgement and issue of confidentiality.
In the case of Zuma, allegations were made by Jacques Pauw, author of ‘The Presidents Keeper’ that the former president had failed to submit tax returns and was receiving a second income while he was president. This prompted an investigation into he’s tax records.
SARS argued that there is an unwritten rule of full disclosure between the taxpayer and SARS.
However, the court found that access to information for public interest outweighs the
Cherese says a legal test was done to determine if the confidentiality was indeed infringed which concluded that it is in the interest of public safety and public interest.