In a press release, the Presidency has announced today the appointment of Prof. Edward Kieswetter as the new Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (SARS).
The President stated that he had “every confidence” that Prof. Kieswetter “has the experience, integrity and skills required to turn SARS around.”
The President stated further that Prof. Kieswetter will ‘restore revenue collection, redirect operations toward innovation, develop future leaders for the organisation, and restore SARS’ credibility and integrity.’
This appointment forms part of the Presidents plan to fix the country’s financial institutions, which includes the appointment of Tito Mboweni as Finance Minister.
The President’s decision to appoint Prof. Kieswetter was based on the recommendation of an independent panel, which he selected.
The panel was chaired by former Minister of Finance, Trevor Manuel, who also wrote the final recommendation.
The President also noted that from a short list of 6 candidates, Prof. Kieswetter emerged as the “strongest candidate”.
Prof. Kieswetter past experience includes being appointed Deputy Commissioner for SARS between 2004 and 2009.
During this time, he was praised for turning around the institution to be more transformative and setting up the ‘Large Business Centre and High Net Worth Individual Unit’.
He was also the Group CEO of Alexander Forbes Group Holdings where he was credited for achieving “significant turnaround of the group” and helping to restore “the group’s reputation”.
Born and raised in Cape Town’s Kensington, Prof. Kieswetter has degrees in engineering, mathematics, tax law, business, and education.
He also has an MBA and has studied at the University of the Western Cape, University of Cape Town, Henley Business School, Harvard Univerity and Stanford.
Prof. Kieswetter’s tenure as the SARS Commissioner will start on the 1st of May and will be for a term of 5 years.