The Office of the Tax Ombudsman has seen a 33% increase in the number of tax complaints against the South African Revenue Service (Sars).

Tax Ombudsman, Judge Bernard Ngoepe says in its annual financial statement that it received 4 800 complaints in the last financial year, up from 3 600.

Sars has tightened its tax compliance measures in an attempt to boost dwindling government revenue.

However, the number of complaints accepted and resolved increased by 43% from 1 400  to 2 000.

Judge Ngoepe  says Sars implemented more than 99% of his recommendations on resolved cases.

“When the economy is squeezed, when so much money is needed for so many projects, institutions like Sars will tighten the screws to get as much as they want. The position of my office is that treat people to pay in a fair manner by Sars. And also where Sars is to make a refund, it should do so as soon as possible because if you don’t pay you demoralise taxpayers.”