Yossi Bachar, the outgoing Finance Ministry Director-General, has finally acceded to calls by Finance Minister Avraham Hirchson and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to take over as temporary head of the Israel Tax Authority, until it becomes clear whether Director Jacky Matza, detained in the current bribery scandal, will be able to return to his post.
"I am full of appreciation to Bachar for accepting our calls to take up the temporary post as director of the Israel Tax Authority," said Hirchson on Saturday night.
"The Israel Tax Authority, which is a very central and important body for the State of Israel, is undergoing a difficult time. Bachar is the right person at the right time to bring back the required stability to the system."
While Hirchson was seeking a temporary replacement for Matza over the past few days, Bachar, who will be leaving his position as Treasury director-general this week, had been reluctant to take up the post. There were candidates within the Tax Authority, but the Finance Ministry's preferred choice was Bachar, an accountant by profession who knows the Tax Authority well.
"I decided to accept Olmert's and Hirchson's requests to take up the temporary position as director of the Israel Tax Authority in an effort to help bring back stability and continuation to the Tax Authority's work and employees, whom I know so well," said Bachar. "I very much hope this appointment will be short and Matza will be able to return to his post."