Customs charges Santa Shoebox project R500 per box for donated goods

Santa Shoeboxes destined for an old age home in Bonteheuwel were sent back to the UK because of a customs duty the home could not afford.

According to Angela Gorman, coordinator of the Senior Santa Shoebox project, customs asked for R500 a shoe box.

The boxes were donated by an organisation in the UK.

The Shoe Boxes are meant for the Lilyhaven Place Old Age Home, which is a CPOA welfare in Bonteheuwel with 127 residents.

Angela Gorman, coordinator of the Senior Santa Shoebox project

Acting Sars Commissioner Mark Kingon says they are governed by a policy which is set in terms of the international trade administration commission.

He says there is a rebate item which allows for donated goods to come into the country for free of duty but this excludes food and clothing.

That has rules which pertain to protecting the local economy.

Mark Kingon, Acting Sars commissioner

We do understand that these are people in desperate need but there are rules to be followed in order to get the goods in the country duty free.

Mark Kingon, Acting Sars commissioner

Kingon says it looks like the right channels were not followed in bringing these goods into the country but he is happy to assist in this regard.

To hear the rest of the conversation with Mark Kingon, listen below:


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