Minister must explain what is being done to resolve the crisis at Armscor

By Staff Writer    20-Sep-2013 00:20 UTC+02:00

Press Release by the DA

David Maynier, Shadow Minister of Defence and Military Veterans 19 September 2013

David Maynier, Shadow Minister of Defence and Military Veterans,
19 September 2013

The Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, was absolutely correct to step in and try to resolve the crisis at Armscor.

Armscor’s failure to deliver under its former – and now reinstated – chairperson, General Moreti “Mojo” Motau, was evidently compromising key operational capabilities of the SANDF.

Long delays in the finalization of certain projects by Armscor evidently had a direct negative impact on, for example, the deployment of soldiers to the DRC.

I will therefore write to the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans, Stanley Motimele, and request him to schedule a hearing on Armscor and General Motau’s reinstatement.

Minister Mapisa-Nqakula, must explain to the Committee what is being done to resolve the crisis at Armscor.

General Motau was fired for a number of reasons, which are set out in court papers, and include inter alia:

  • “That the Corporation (Armscor) has not been able to meet the defence material requirements of the Department effectively, efficiently and economically”;
  • “That delays in the execution of various projects are attributed to the decision or decisions by the Board”; and
  • There was a failure “to provide the required marketing support to the defence industry”.

However, because of a monumental bungle, General Motau has been reinstated as Armscor’s chairperson following a High Court ruling that his dismissal was unconstitutional, unlawful and therefore invalid.

Remarkably, this is the second time that General Motau has managed to avoid being fired. Two successive defence ministers have tried and failed to fire him.

Unfortunately, General Motau’s reinstatement is only likely to intensify what appears to be a ‘civil war’ between the Department of Defence and Armscor.

Armscor must not be allowed to become a ‘ball-and-chain’ holding back the Department of Defence.

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