AS IT HAPPENED: Mbeki testifies at arms deal hearing

2014-07-17 16:30

Mbeki: 'We wanted the nation to have a sense of ownership of new defence force, hence inclusive consultation on the arms deal.

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Last Updated at 17:18
17 Jul 17:51   Right, going off duty now. We will continue tomorrow. Follow News24 for further updates.

17 Jul 17:50   Mbeki: I am aware of the many many allegations ... but I'm not aware of any evidence of cabinet acting in a corrupt manner.

17 Jul 17:49   Mbeki: To this day, allegations are aplenty. You could fill books. But where is the evidence?

17 Jul 17:46   Mbeki says Hoffman should go to the ANC for an explanation on why certain decisions were taken (Mbeki being recalled).

17 Jul 17:43   Moerane says Pres. Zuma never said Former Pres. Mbeki manipulated the system and blocked inquir.

17 Jul 17:39   Seriti says the question by Hoffman isn't relevant to the the terms of reference of this commission.

17 Jul 17:34   Moerane says Mbeki won't be given homework, "this is not a school".

17 Jul 17:33   Hoffman: It's very clear you weren't weren't high up in this (the arms deal procurement). Thank you for your evidence.

17 Jul 17:31   Hoffman asks Mbeki to read the book, and specifically the bits that refer to him. Asks him to respond to what is said about him.

17 Jul 17:29   Mbeki says he has not read the arms deal book "Devil in the detail".

17 Jul 17:25   Hoffman brings up a third Sunday Times article.

17 Jul 17:24   Mbeki: I am not sure why I must respond to opinions of newspapers.

17 Jul 17:22   Hoffman brings up another Sunday Times report. It's dated 3 August 2008.

17 Jul 17:21  

Hoffman, who brought the article to the commission as evidence, asks who the reporter of it was because Mbeki is accusing that person of lying.


17 Jul 17:18   Mbeki says the Sunday Times article "is a complete fabrication, from beginning to end". I don't know why you want to circulate what is a lie, Mbeki says.

17 Jul 17:16   Hoffman says Moerane anticipated the wrong article. He'll explain... The headline is "Come clean on the arms deal, ANC tells Mbeki".

17 Jul 17:15   Moerane objects to a newspaper article being used as evidence. He says it's not evidence, it's an allegation.

17 Jul 17:14   Hoffman asks Mbeki if he knows about the Sunday Times. Mbeki confirms. Hoffman shows the 16 March 2008 edition.

17 Jul 17:12   Mbeki confirms he remembers Schabir Shaik being convicted. The same Shaik who was freed on medical parole a few years ago.

17 Jul 17:11   Hoffman says he hopes he doesn't keep too many people away from their loved ones and dinner.

17 Jul 17:10   The commission resumes.

17 Jul 17:08   Mbeki having a lighter moment during the break as he laughs at something his advocate says.

17 Jul 16:57   And another adjurnment.

17 Jul 16:56   If I've wasted your time please tell me and let's get on with the show. - Hoffman

17 Jul 16:54  

Seriti losing patience with Hoffman.

Manuel throws his head back and closes his eyes.


17 Jul 16:52  

I think Hoffman was getting choked up again. He's not even asking a question now. He's just talking a lot about something.

Hoffman tells Seriti "you are entitled to to hear hear-say evidence"


17 Jul 16:42  

In what's become a norm now, Moerane (Mbeki's advocate) objects to Hoffman's line of questioning concerning bribes.

This could go on for a while yet...


17 Jul 16:41   Hoffman: There's ample evidence of bribery in various parts of the arms deals.

17 Jul 16:40   Hoffman asked to put short questions to Mbeki instead of making long speeches.

17 Jul 16:40   Mbeki: Been waiting for years for concrete allegations of bribery against ministerial committee members, and nothing.

17 Jul 16:39   Hoffman says he must enlighten Mbeki as to what's in the ConCourt brief.

17 Jul 16:38   Mbeki says the issues of bribes being paid out is "speculative".

17 Jul 16:34  

Hoffman AGAIN asked to withdraw a question about Moerane asking a "silly question". he tries to explain. Seriti stops him. After much back and forth from a rather testy Hoffman, he agrees to withdraw his comment.

Hoffman says Seriti should read the papers before the ConCourt. It's full of info that these "so-called" commissions were bribed.


17 Jul 16:28  

Moerane stops Hoffman - I don't see the relevance of this line of questioning, he says.

Hoffman says he'll explain Moerane.


17 Jul 16:26  

Hoffman: Gavin Woods resigned from Scopa in protest with the way the Mbeki government handled the arms deal investigation. Do you recall?

Mbeki: I do recall. Quite why I don't know. I'm sure it is a matter that was discussed in Parliament.


17 Jul 16:24   Hoffman asks if Mbeki remembers that Schabir Shaik was arrested for his corrupt relationship with Zuma and that Mbeki wrote a report attacking (or as Mbeki puts it, critiquing) the joint investigating unit.

17 Jul 16:22   Mbeki says the practice was to give an institution being audited the chance to comment, and there was nothing extraordinary.

17 Jul 16:16  

17 Jul 16:13   The ConCourt had found that it was improper for Heath, a sitting judge to chair the unit reporting to the executive

17 Jul 16:11  

Mbeki is doing the throat-clearing again.

Hoffman jokes that he'd rather not have Mr Moerane speak up again as they'd be there for a long time. Indeed so.


17 Jul 16:09  

Mbeki says they have agreed that a press conference by Lekota, Irwin etc should be done at OR Tambo airport in Jan 2001.

The press conference defended the procurement of the arms.


17 Jul 16:05   Hoffman says JIT report argues that the SIU should investigate the arms deal.

17 Jul 16:05   Mbeki can't remember any of the details about complaints from Auditor General".

17 Jul 16:02   Mbeki says he doesn't know anything about the police investigation into the arms deal?

17 Jul 16:00   Mbeki says he doesn't remember Auditor general complaining or talking about auditing the arms deal.

17 Jul 15:57   Mbeki says he remembers the date the deal was signed.

17 Jul 15:56   Mbeki says he doesn't recall that the Auditor General or Minister of Defense raised the matter with him (to audit Arms Deal).

17 Jul 15:54   Hoffman insists he's not making this up "as we go along".

17 Jul 15:53   Moerane asks that Hoffman produce the documents ... Seriti "he is in a difficult position because he is reading from a book".

17 Jul 15:52   Mbeki speculates that the statement might have said Zuma was not involved in arms deal procurement.

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