Today's Big Stories

Pillay's early exit root of Gordhan's fraud charges

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has issued a formal summons to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and other senior ex-Sars officials to appear before court on 2 November.

It has been issued for Gordhan, former Sars commissioner Oupa Magashula and former deputy Sars Commissioner Ivan Pillay.

NPA head Shaun Abrahams called for a press briefing in Pretoria on Tuesday morning where he explained that the summons is for a charge of fraud, among other indictments.

EWN's Barry Bateman explains that the fraud charge relates to the approval and payout of Pillay's early retirement package in 2010.

The NPA claims that the specific type of retirement requested by Pillay was not applicable to him, but was given the stamp of approval anyway.

Despite being advised that it was not applicable to Pillay, it's alleged that Magashula put through a memorandum to Pravin Gordhan who then approved it.

Barry Bateman, EWN reporter

Bateman anticipates that there could be a court application filed to challenge the summonses and charges.

At the same time, Abrahams revealed that a decision has not yet been made on whether to prosecute Sars officials over the the so-called Sars rogue unit investigation.

He maintains that the alleged spy unit was unlawful because the then President Thabo Mbeki did not give Sars the executive authority to enable the covert function of the unit.

Abrahams says the investigation is continuing and they have not made a decision as yet.

Barry Bateman, EWN reporter

According to EWN, within an hour of the news, the rand had lost 3 percent of its value against the dollar.

At 11.30am, the rand was trading at 14.21 to the dollar, 15.79 to the euro and 17.47 to the pound.

Listen to the full conversation from The Redi Tlhabi Show (with Eusebius Mckaiser):

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