No weapons on-board aircraft, says Sars

Sunday, July 29, 2018

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) has refuted media reports that customs officials discovered R4 and R5 rifles, 7.62mm light machine guns and ammunition on-board an aircraft at Waterkloof Airforce base last Saturday.

“Sars wishes to state that the reports contain factual inaccuracies and that we were not afforded an opportunity to comment on the reports prior to release,” the revenue service said in a statement.

It said the specific aircraft, a chartered flight, which was scheduled to depart from OR Tambo International Airport on Friday, 22 July, was cancelled.

“We can confirm that our Customs and Immigrations officials were informed by the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) of the flight’s schedule to be able to conduct the necessary inspections as per normal processes, including inspecting the flight for prohibited and restricted goods,” Sars said.

“Our customs officials were working with colleagues in the SANDF to clear the aircraft, and we can report that neither weapons nor ammunition were found in the flight or passenger luggage during the inspection of the flight and documents presented to the Customs officials.”

Sars further pledged its full commitment to cooperation with the SANDF and other relevant government agencies at national points of entry in the effort to protect the interests of the country. –