Hawks to investigate arms deal claims
Cape Town - The Hawks will investigate new allegations of bribery into the multibillion-rand arms deal, the Democratic Alliance said on Monday.
The party's defence spokesperson David Maynier said that Lieutenant General Anwar Dramat, head of the Hawks, had sent him a letter confirming this.
The DA wrote to Dramat requesting an investigation after Saab chief executive officer, Hakan Buskhe, issued a press statement on Thursday admitting that an internal investigation had revealed that about R24m had been paid by BAE Systems to Sanip Pty Ltd.
The payments were then transferred from Sanip Pty Ltd to a South African consultant; the transactions were never entered into the accounts of Sanip Pty Ltd; and the payments took place without the knowledge of Saab.
The consultant who received the secret payments was reportedly Fana Hlongwane, who was an adviser to former defence minister Joe Modise, and who was alleged to have received commissions relating to the acquisition of 26 Gripen fighter jets from Saab/British Aerospace.
Maynier said that Dramat's letter to him was dated June 20 2011, and stated that: "I [Dramat] am aware of the recent disclosures made by Saab's Executive Officer, Mr Hakan Buskhe. This information will be assessed by the directorate for priority crime investigation."
Maynier said the DA welcomed the undertaking and now awaited the outcome of the assessment of the new information.