UDM: Consider reopening arms' deal probe

2011-06-20 14:06
Pretoria - A panel of judges must determine whether there is sufficient evidence to reopen a probe into the controversial arms’ deal, the UDM said on Monday.

"The United Democratic Movement calls on government to appoint a panel of judges to conduct a preliminary investigation, to verify whether there is prima facie evidence that the investigation should be reopened," party president Bantu Holomisa said on Monday.

His call follows revelations last week by Saab president Hkan Buskhe that R24m was paid to former defence minister Joe Modise's adviser, Fana Hlongwane, after the money was transferred into an account of one of its subsidiaries by British arms manufacturer BAE Systems.

Saab and BAE were partners in the deal to supply Gripen fighter jets and Hawk trainers to SA in 1999.

"If there is a case to be answered, the panel of judges should also advise the nation on whether the Hawks is the appropriate organisation to conduct the investigation, since this new evidence suggests that their previous investigation had been less than perfect."

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