Civil society groups set to challenge Arms Deal findings

Civil Society Groups, the Corruption Watch (CW) and the Right2Know Campaign (R2K) are set to challenge the finding of the Seriti Arms Procurement Commission (Arms Deal).

The organisations said they are aim is to have the outcome set aside on the basis that the commission failed to carry out a full and independent investigation of the matter.

“The court application will be primarily aimed at setting aside a finding which has been widely criticised on the basis that the commission did not carry out a proper investigation and simply accepted evidence which was presented to it by those who were involved in the arms deal, without questioning it or testing it,” said the organisations.

The commission, which was chaired by Judge Willie Seriti, ended its three-year investigation by stating that it could find no evidence of corruption.

President Jacob Zuma appointed Seriti to probe allegations of corruption in the multi-billion rand arms procurement deal in 1999.

The commission did not make any recommendations and the African National Congress said it was a closed chapter.

However the organisations said they want to ensure that of one of the worst examples of corruption in South Africa’s history will not be whitewashed.

They added the commission failed to look at massive evidence during the investigation that cost the public more than 100-million.

 “Literally millions of documents, collected and stored by the now disbanded Scorpions, went unexamined,” said the groups.

The organisations are set to court proceedings in September at the North Gauteng High Court.

By Senzile Kubheka

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