News24

Gripen won't fly required hours

2011-04-13 22:15

Cape Town - Air Force chief Lieutenant General Carlo Gagiano said on Wednesday that the air force could not afford to put its new Gripen jet fighters into flight for the required number of hours.

"No, we are not going to fly the required number of hours," he conceded during a media briefing ahead of Defence Minister Lindiwe Sisulu's budget vote in the National Assembly.

"But the hours that we will fly will ensure that the people and the aircraft are safe and that we do the correct training."

Gagiano said the air force was getting around the problem by having the cockpits of its fleet of 24 Hawk jet trainers "Gripenised" to make for a smoother transition for pilots from one to the other.

"We have a few mitigating strategies.

"First of all as a design principle, we have decided to Gripenise the cockpit of the Hawk so that means that the transition from Hawk to Gripen is almost seemless and very quick.

"People adapt to the new environment.

"It is basically just higher performance but they are totally used to the systems.

"We are also in the process of upgrading the PC-7's cockpits which is enhancing this process and we intend to pull down work from Gripen to Hawk to PC-7 to do the same kind of training but at a much lower cost."

He said the air force was also using Gripen simulators extensively and this was working very well.

Gagiano said so far 15 Gripen have been delivered from Sweden and the rest would be stored there free of cost until there was a full consignment ready to be flown out to South Africa.

He said the shortage of funding for the Gripen was part of the shortage of funds felt by the defence force, which is a getting a scant additional R1.3bn this year.

"Gripen is part of this under-funding, perhaps because of the cause of this capability it is perhaps more visible there."

The air force's budget comes to around R6bn of the total defence budget of just over R34bn, which Sisulu described as totally inadequate.

Comments
  • watyasay - 2011-04-13 22:22

    sell it then.just sell it

      Johan - 2011-04-14 07:19

      Remember the sign outside Waterkloof AFB. "The sound of Thunder, The sound of freedom" I suppose "Gravy" don't make any sound.

      Sheda Hab - 2011-04-14 12:16

      Shabir Flies and the Grippen is impounded. Is it not supposed to be the other way around. Not in Sa where corruption rules. If the thieves gave back what they stole in the arms deal then the Grippens could afford to fly

      PonkieDiel - 2011-04-15 11:41

      Eskom must have used all the coal, again...

  • edvermaak - 2011-04-13 22:30

    OPEN THAT ARMS DEAL INVESTIGATION - Minister Sisulu, you are are becoming equally guilty in this whole matter. Zuma, you have no more excuses not for this matter to be investigated once and for all. ANC government - you are all implicated.

  • Cameron - 2011-04-13 22:30

    Surprise surprise. Let's spend billions on some things we can't afford - and then we don't use them. That is the current government for you.

      Bowhunter - 2011-04-14 07:38

      Yes, you can add some overpriced highway upgrades and toll systems to that!

      Observer - 2011-04-14 08:53

      Let's also not maintain that which we have overspent on. In a few years time we'll have a few spare (rusted) parts to show for the 48 billion odd that was spent. What is the point of having the planes if not to use them? Or is it for guva-ment to show off to the rest of Africa - "Look what we have! No, we don't know how to use them, but look what we have!"

  • Cameron - 2011-04-13 22:31

    Surprise surprise. Let's spend billions on some things we can't afford - and then we don't use them. That is the current government for you.

  • edvermaak - 2011-04-13 22:34

    YOU, the ANC - have single handedly stolen billions, if not trillions for your top brass. YOU have unashamedly raped the coffers of our treasury. YOUR poor (no - not my poor) are begging for answers. You have none to give them - and you will lead them blindly into voting you into power again. SHAME on you.

      Whoosa - 2011-04-14 06:44

      Yep, your spot-on! The only answers they give the poor-"Its because of apartheid". Amaaaaandlaa! What a joke this country have become, hello zimBOBwe!

  • BunduBabe - 2011-04-13 22:35

    but they manage to put commercials on TV?? WTF?

  • Boer - 2011-04-13 22:36

    The air force's budget comes to around R6bn of the total defence budget of just R34m, Your figures are wrong. Go to school. How can the Airforces budget be in the billiions if the total defence budget is a mere R34 million. Somethings not correct here in this statement.

      Ogre - 2011-04-13 23:23

      Oops. Read again. Bn behind both numbers.

      Ockert - 2011-04-14 07:50

      Probably fixed by News24 afterwards ?, to make boer look like a fool ?, just like many TV Ads nowdays make whites out to be idiots (FNB etc)

  • Sir Eidolon - 2011-04-13 22:38

    They should Gripenise a bloody ministerial Merc, fokkit! Then our fighter pilots can train their flying skills while doubling up as drivers for our leaders. WIN WIN.

      Jonty - 2011-04-13 22:58

      Priceless!

      Jonty - 2011-04-13 22:58

      Priceless!

      Jonty - 2011-04-13 22:58

      Priceless!

      Jonty - 2011-04-13 23:05

      Priceless!

      leon.homan - 2011-04-14 05:50

      Blue light brigade with Gripenised big black cars :-) Excellent idea!!!

      Reality - 2011-04-14 08:00

      Not "leaders", plunderers.

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:11

      Not "leaders", Pleaders....for more of our money!

  • DerpyHooves - 2011-04-13 22:39

    Ok, boys, there are some buget cut this year, but we will keep on training. Now, sgt. Greene if you will take this xbox and copy of HAWX we can start mission 4.

  • SaintBruce - 2011-04-13 22:42

    The entire reason to buy the Hawk trainer ( over the better Piaggio) was that it would be delivered with a "gripenised' cockpit! Who is this guy trying to fool? Only 12 out of 36 delivered ? The ships were faster to build than these few fighter aircraft ??? Something does not add up in the whole SANDF! I wonder how many firearms THEY lost in the last few years??? Yes - reopen the arms deal investigation again - we have been shafted.

      Ockert - 2011-04-14 07:54

      Still not flying the aircraft the REQUIRED number of hours, (Required is that the specs. by the manufacturer, to ensure that the craft is always in working order ?), like our Subs, which no-one can maintain and someone BROKE, and now is unusable, with not all having been delivered yet as well ??

      Ockert - 2011-04-14 07:55

      Still not flying the aircraft the REQUIRED number of hours, (Required is that the specs. by the manufacturer, to ensure that the craft is always in working order ?), like our Subs, which no-one can maintain and someone BROKE, and now is unusable, with not all having been delivered yet as well ??

      Ockert - 2011-04-14 07:55

      Still not flying the aircraft the REQUIRED number of hours, (Required is that the specs. by the manufacturer, to ensure that the craft is always in working order ?), like our Subs, which no-one can maintain and someone BROKE, and now is unusable, with not all having been delivered yet as well ??

      Ockert - 2011-04-14 07:57

      Still not flying the aircraft the REQUIRED number of hours, (Required is that the specs. by the manufacturer, to ensure that the craft is always in working order ?), like our Subs, which no-one can maintain and someone BROKE, and now is unusable, with not all having been delivered yet as well ??

      Ockert - 2011-04-14 07:59

      Still not flying the aircraft the REQUIRED number of hours, (Required is that the specs. by the manufacturer, to ensure that the craft is always in working order ?), like our Subs, which no-one can maintain and someone BROKE, and now is unusable, with not all having been delivered yet as well ??

      Sir Eidolon - 2011-04-14 08:30

      @Ockert: I believe the required hours refer to those NATO deem necessary to consider our air force functional.

      The Patriot - 2011-04-15 12:46

      82000 SANDF weapons have gone missing. .

  • Dan - 2011-04-13 22:51

    Read this and weep. http://praag.co.uk/news/southern-africa/557-new-sa-sub-damaged-by-sheer-stupidity-.html The emperor is naked and the mad crowds are cheering...

  • Jonty - 2011-04-13 22:56

    @ Sir Eidolon & DerpyHooves - LOL - your comments really cracked me up. If it wasn't so sad, it would be f*cken hilarious!!

  • Iron John - 2011-04-13 23:00

    In other words, these idiots cannot fly the bloody aircraft. They're even "Gripenising" existing aircraft!!!!! My God, will we ever be set free?

      Sir Eidolon - 2011-04-13 23:06

      Soon some bright spark will recommission the Cheetahs. All they need to do is paint 'GRIPPON' on the sides and their headaches will be gone.

      Darter - 2011-04-14 11:33

      You dont know what you're talking about do you? All they mean by "Gripenised" is that pilots spend less time learning to use Gripen systems, since they've already been exposed to such on the Hawk. It just means less cost to the SAAF in terms of flying hours. Pilots who are destined to the Gripen stream still fly the aircraft, but less hours are dedicated to the individual systems of the aircraft. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ANYONE NOT BEING ABLE TO FLY THE AIRCRAFT....

      Darter - 2011-04-14 11:33

      You dont know what you're talking about do you? All they mean by "Gripenised" is that pilots spend less time learning to use Gripen systems, since they've already been exposed to such on the Hawk. It just means less cost to the SAAF in terms of flying hours. Pilots who are destined to the Gripen stream still fly the aircraft, but less hours are dedicated to the individual systems of the aircraft. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ANYONE NOT BEING ABLE TO FLY THE AIRCRAFT....

      Darter - 2011-04-14 11:33

      You dont know what you're talking about do you? All they mean by "Gripenised" is that pilots spend less time learning to use Gripen systems, since they've already been exposed to such on the Hawk. It just means less cost to the SAAF in terms of flying hours. Pilots who are destined to the Gripen stream still fly the aircraft, but less hours are dedicated to the individual systems of the aircraft. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ANYONE NOT BEING ABLE TO FLY THE AIRCRAFT....

  • Vladimir - 2011-04-13 23:30

    Gagiano said the air force was getting around the problem by having the cockpits of its fleet of 24 Hawk jet trainers "Gripenised" to make for a smoother transition for pilots from one to the other. HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM...Hawks are now being gripenised as the pilots are too dumb to fly them. What is the purpose of the simulator? Why didn't they just upgrade the Hawk's cockpit, instead of buying new air crafts. And why did SAAF only accepted 15 Gripens of their fleet. Do they have pilots to fly these air crafts or are they sitting ducks waiting for better days to come. These guys know exactly how to waste tax payers' money.

      saliem - 2011-04-14 00:01

      Its Air CRAFT not Air CRAFTS D I C K Head. Take a language course, do some research and then come back and add something meaningful if you can :P

      braveinternetguy - 2011-04-14 00:59

      @saliem - I'd recommend an anger-management course for you...

      Klaus - 2011-04-14 02:43

      saslime, is this all you can come up with??

      Gatvol - 2011-04-14 08:12

      Nobody's to dumb to fly the aircraft. It's not like you are used to driving a old Toyota, and then you can slip behind the wheel and drive the latest Merc without any problems. Aircraft is different. You need maths and science just to get into school just to learn to fly one of those damn things.Pilots needs a certain amount of training to learn to fly a new high tech aircraft. You will probably find that aviation law requires the pilots to fly x amount of hours to qualify to fly them operationally. It's the same for passenger jets. You are the one being stupid here

  • Chris - 2011-04-13 23:57

    Now if all those who benefitted from the arms deal returned that meney we might have a competent military!

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:14

      Doubt it! No amount of cash thrown at them will make ANY African army competent......

  • U1 - 2011-04-13 23:57

    Just a matter of performance????? Teach people to ride bicles and then let them drive high performance cars. Hope it doesn't make sense because flying a Pilatus and then step into a Gripen is the same. This is proof that we can't afford the Gripens and don't need them.

      nick - 2011-04-14 05:44

      I'm surprised that @salium hasn't yet commented on your spelling of 'bicles' :) :) !!!

  • Donovan Jackson - 2011-04-14 00:19

    ANC stole all the money, did they? Time to withhold tax, or even outright evade paying tax. It is a moral duty to do so since the 'government' steals it anyway.

  • Donovan Jackson - 2011-04-14 00:19

    ANC stole all the money, did they? Time to withhold tax, or even outright evade paying tax. It is a moral duty to do so since the 'government' steals it anyway.

  • Donovan Jackson - 2011-04-14 00:25

    ANC stole all the money, did they? Time to withhold tax, or even outright evade paying tax. It is a moral duty to do so since the 'government' steals it anyway.

  • Sterling - 2011-04-14 01:04

    most countries can't afford to have these high tech. planes because they cost too much to operate. One F-18 cost a 100 million dollars each and the B-2 bomber costs two billions each. The figures that most of you on this page are talking about are peanuts.

  • Palian - 2011-04-14 02:08

    what say we train em with scale model building, then kites, then radio controlled planes, then air balloons and gliders. we can put a grippen sticker on each. by the time they qualify the model building they will be too old for combat aircraft training anyway. lotsa bucks and faces saved ;)

  • braveinternetguy - 2011-04-14 02:33

    The Swedish manufacturers must feel quite disappointed - it is a product that they are rigtfully extremely proud of, yet here is South Africa, their pride and joy suffers at the hands of these fools...

  • JCTF - 2011-04-14 02:58

    I want a Gripen simulator in my lounge.

      Tracer - 2011-04-14 05:52

      you may get a proper Gripen in your lounge when our quality pilots start flying them......I can't help but think of the young pilot who accused a flight instructor of racism when he failed the pilot and took him to court. The pilot was given his wings and died in an Impala, result of investigation....pilot error.

      Andre - 2011-04-14 08:06

      Give a Gripen to Malema and he will park it in your lounge.lol

  • Thomas - 2011-04-14 05:33

    What a shambles...!

  • Julius - 2011-04-14 06:02

    must be hectic for our air forces 5 pilots

  • colinw - 2011-04-14 06:38

    a bit like the submarines

  • CTS - 2011-04-14 06:48

    Well done! Our brand new submarine is in the docks because of a lack of funds. Our planes are on the ground due to a lack of funds. Almost all of our tanks are not in a working order due to a lack of maintenance. Gadaffi, why hold on to a piece of desert - come, this country is up for grabs. No oil, but hell - we know how to steal, murder, strike and toye-toye - a paradise for criminals & idiots!

      Jerry - 2011-04-14 13:58

      My comrades, NOW is the time to ATTACK those bastards-americans

  • thabatao - 2011-04-14 06:49

    Cut the ANC fat-cats' salaries by 50% and you will have enough money to run the Gripens for 24/7. As easy as that. These overpaid lazy oxygen thieves can do with a pay cut.

  • Pat - 2011-04-14 06:49

    White Elephants

  • Pat - 2011-04-14 06:50

    White Elephants

  • CTS - 2011-04-14 06:51

    Well done! Our brand new submarine is in the docks because of a lack of funds. Our planes are on the ground due to a lack of funds. Almost all of our tanks are not in a working order due to a lack of maintenance. Gadaffi, why hold on to a piece of desert - come, this country is up for grabs. No oil, but hell - we know how to steal, murder, strike and toye-toye - a paradise for criminals & idiots!

  • umlaut - 2011-04-14 06:58

    How about making a real saving by gripenising an interior of a volkswagen beetle for smooth transformation to the real thing--or better still--sell the armsdeal blunders to Gadaffi.

  • umlaut - 2011-04-14 06:59

    How about making a real saving by gripenising an interior of a volkswagen beetle for smooth transformation to the real thing--or better still--sell the armsdeal blunders to Gadaffi.

  • CTS - 2011-04-14 07:01

    Well done! Our brand new submarine is in the docks because of a lack of funds. Our planes are on the ground due to a lack of funds. Almost all of our tanks are not in a working order due to a lack of maintenance. Gadaffi, why hold on to a piece of desert - come, this country is up for grabs. No oil, but hell - we know how to steal, murder, strike and toye-toye - a paradise for criminals & idiots!

      JOHNNYBRAVO - 2011-04-14 14:08

      tanks? we have tanks?

  • Wacko - 2011-04-14 07:15

    These MONKEY'S cannot even drive a car properly.................

      Zooma Lema - 2011-04-14 07:52

      Monkey see monkey do.

  • Rasky - 2011-04-14 07:36

    Soon they will have a grippen cockpit dashboard in there cars too, Banana republic .Hahahahahah

  • Zooma Lema - 2011-04-14 07:51

    Do these pilots have Grade 12?

      Zooma Lema - 2011-04-14 07:52

      Forgot to ask about the general's qualification and the minister.

  • observing - 2011-04-14 07:51

    Remember what Judge J Webster on 27 January 2005 said: It is my considered view firstly that a fatally flawed tender process [Arms Deal]offends against society, its morals, its deeply held and cherished beliefs. It should not be allowed to stand.

  • Anonymous Thinker - 2011-04-14 07:54

    And to think that our navy, airforce, army were once one of the best in the world. Foreigners came to US for training. now, thanks to government, we're one of the worst. No wonder we're the laughing stock.

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:17

      Sigh...those were the days!

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:17

      Sigh...those were the days!

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:17

      Sigh...those were the days!

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:18

      Sigh...those were the days!

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:18

      Sigh...those were the days!

      MaLemmer - 2011-04-14 08:18

      Sigh...those were the days!

  • Tantrum - 2011-04-14 07:55

    Oooo Fok ... 'n houtie wat 'n fighter jet vlieg ... hier kom 'n groot f-op

  • Tantrum - 2011-04-14 07:55

    Oooo Fok ... 'n houtie wat 'n fighter jet vlieg ... hier kom 'n groot f-op

  • Tantrum - 2011-04-14 07:56

    Oooo Fok ... 'n houtie wat 'n fighter jet vlieg ... hier kom 'n groot f-op

  • Badballie - 2011-04-14 07:56

    should have bought all the weapons that are sitting in Mozambique instead, now Africa has 2 grave yards of military equipment that can't be used

  • coonpsycho - 2011-04-14 08:04

    air force as corrupt as the rest of the ANC.... ask me been there 4 time to enroll and the whites never get in... even with superior scores. fn racist b@sterds,

  • coonpsycho - 2011-04-14 08:04

    air force as corrupt as the rest of the ANC.... ask me been there 4 time to enroll and the whites never get in... even with superior scores. fn racist b@sterds,

  • coonpsycho - 2011-04-14 08:04

    air force as corrupt as the rest of the ANC.... ask me been there 4 time to enroll and the whites never get in... even with superior scores. fn racist b@sterds.

  • jaycee - 2011-04-14 08:20

    And now it is Gagiano who must humiliate himself to explain the results of the politicians' folly! But the politicians don't care a stitch if things break down and disintegrate, as long as they can pocket unearned riches in the process. And there are many such examples. Wake up electorate, it will not get better; phuck the ANC!

  • leeupan - 2011-04-14 08:52

    Instead of funding the Air Force, the government officials rather buy themselves beemers and mercs, and wait, Zuma needs a new luxury plain for himself and family. What a pathetic situation.

  • alfred - 2011-04-14 09:56

    Scrap the leasing of the new VIP transport planes and fly the politicians around in the Gripens instead. Its a win-win situation. The politicians get some real fat-cat cred. and the Gripens can fly.

  • Echo Bravo - 2011-04-14 11:32

    Being a proud ex member of the South African Air Force, (1966- 1973) it really hurts to see this, Yes Johan the sign outside Waterkloof AFB was "The sound of Thunder, The sound of freedom" and damn it, it was heard. The Mirage III CZ, EZ, DZ, RZ not to forget the BZ were a pleasure to work on and fly, The FI which followed it became known as "FLAM GAT" and I had the pleasure of working on them too. Regarding the comment of the General Garlo Gagiano,s qualifications (TOP GUN ON MANY OCCASIONS) I don,t doubt them for a moment because I was at 2 Squadron when he first stepped into a Mirage III BZ on a training flight. Just a PITY these damn fools of a government cannot see the benefits of a great Airforce, instead they will spend on stupid Sushi Dinners, Fancy Cars, Hotels, Not to Mention stupid court cases (Malema with 11 Attorneys, etc.), Freebee's for family to Dubai for shopping. In Closing I Wish to say thanks to the guys at the Airforce Museums for keep MIRAGE III CZ 809 flying its alway a pleasure to see it fly.