Disgraced official claimed he was untouchable: Protected by Gordhan

Disgraced official claimed he was untouchable: Protected by Gordhan

- South Africa's ambassador to Italy has been recalled after being found guilty of misconduct

- Shirish Soni had his pay docked over financial irregularities and misrepresenting his qualifications

- The KZN-born official allegedly bragged about his close ties to Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

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South Africa's ambassador to Italy seems to have been getting up to no good after a guilty conviction.

Shirish Soni has had his salary docked for three months after being found guilty of financial irregularities and misrepresenting his academic qualifications, Briefly.co.za gathered.

The former SARS senior official is facing four counts of misconduct related to sexual harassment, misrepresentation of his qualifications, financial irregularities and 'compromising the mission's security'.

Born in Durban, Soni worked at the South African Revenue Service during Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan's tenure as commissioner.

IOL reports that Soni's suspension letter stated that he had noted the incorrect dates when it came to his matric, with the Department of Basic Education confirming that the ambassador didn't graduate in 1974 as he claimed.

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Soni is in hot water after breaching the Department of International Relations and hiring an Italian intern:

“You are found guilty on this charge for ignoring guidance that was provided to you by head office management and continued to hire or bring an Italian national as an intern or volunteer at the South African Embassy in Rome thus compromising Mission security.”

A DIRCO official says Soni would often brag about his alleged close ties to the minister:

“Soni always threatened embassy officials by telling them that he is untouchable as he is friends with Minister Pravin.”

With new evidence against him being uncovered as each day goes by, another source in the department commented that:

“I don’t even think his friends from high places would save him this time around."

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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