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Joe Modise’s advisor to testify at arms deal enquiry

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Fana Hlongwane, who served as an arms consultant and adviser to late defence minister Joe Modise, is set to testify before the Seriti Commission of Inquiry on Monday.

According to the commission’s website, Navy official Admiral Alan Green and Chief Director at the Department of Trade and Industry, Masizakhe Zimela would provide “supplementary evidence” in the morning.
They will be followed by Hlongwane, who has been scheduled as this week’s main witness.

The commission is currently holding public hearings into alleged corruption in the multi-billion rand arms procurement deal in 1999.
At the time, the government acquired, among other hardware, 26 Gripen fighter aircraft and 24 Hawk lead-in fighter trainer aircraft for the air force, and frigates and submarines for the navy.

Earlier this month, SANDF chief of acquisitions during the 1999 arms deal period, Shamin “Chippy” Shaik, rubbished allegations that he had solicited bribes from arms suppliers.

The commission — with Judge Willie Seriti at its helm — was appointed by President Jacob Zuma three years ago. Zuma recently extended the terms of the commission until April 30, 2015 — after which it will be expected to issue a report within a six-month deadline. SAPA

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