Publication: Democratic Alliance Issued: Date: 2006-07-03 Reporter: Eddie Trent Reporter: Reporter:

DA: Trent - Corvette & Arms Deal - Govt to be Ethically Upstaged if it Does Not Act



Democratic Alliance




Eddie Trent MP

Eddie Trent MP
Democratic Alliance

As German publication "Der Spiegel" comes off the presses with more details surrounding suspected irregularities around the corvette deal, the Democratic Alliance repeats its calls for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and Government at large to continue investigations into the strategic defence procurement packages.

It is important to remember that at the time of its controversial release in 2001, the Joint Investigation (JIT) Report into the alleged irregularities did not rule out further investigations. As more questions are still left unanswered than not, the DA remains convinced that all avenues have not been explored.

In around 1995 the SANDF was negotiating with Spanish company, Bazan to purchase four light, modestly equipped frigates for R2.5bn. For reasons unknown, the plug was pulled on these negotiations. In 1998 South Africa at last committed itself to the purchase of four equally modestly equipped frigates from the German Frigate Alliance along with Thomson CSF. Except now, the costs had risen to R6.8bn.

The Democratic Alliance submits that these are not merely unrelated facts and the authorities in Germany, the country who benefited economically from the transaction, seem to agree with us.

We now call on the South African government, to proactively emulate their German counterparts. In this respect, and especially in terms of how this dragging issue has come to taint the lives of our long-suffering citizens, the ANC-government now needs clear the way for the following two things to happen:
Government cannot afford to procrastinate any longer on this issue. The time has come for the ANC to prioritise national interests above party-political loyalty. Should it not do this it would risk the possibility of having South Africa ethically upstaged and severely embarrassed internationally by the principled actions of one of our major trading partners.

For Information : Eddie Trent     083 600 8949
Media Liaison   : Martin Slabbert       082 320 1890

With acknowledgements to Eddie Trent and the DA.