Contractor Admits He Helped Spark Arms Probe
The personal beliefs of a disgruntled defence contractor partly sparked the allegations of wrongdoing in the strategic arms package, the public hearings into the deal revealed in Pretoria yesterday.
This emerged while the contractor, Richard Young, was being questioned about his view that the product of a competitor who beat him to a tender was inferior.
"So, it is your beliefs that have sparked all these allegations?" asked Michael Kuper, for the department of Defence.
Young responded: "To a certain extent, yes."
Kuper also suggested Young had deliberately sought to discredit the arms procurement process through the media after he lost the contract.
Young is managing director of Communications Computer Intelligence Integration Systems (CCII), a Cape Town-based defence information technology company.
He contends that there were irregularities in the awarding of a R40-million tender for information management systems used in the four corvettes South Africa bought under the arms package.
CCII was named the preferred supplier of these systems, Young claims, but the tender was awarded to French company Detexis.
Detexis is the sister company of African Defence Systems, of which arms acquisition head Chippy Shaik's brother, Schabir, is a shareholder and director.
Kuper questioned Young's testimony of the past two days, suggesting it was rife with innuendo.
The hearings continue.
With acknowledgements to Sapa and The Star.