Back to 2001 media releases
Back to Arms Deal Page

UNITED DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT

MEDIA RELEASE

ARMS DEAL PUBLIC HEARINGS: DECISION NOT TO ALLOW ELECTRONIC MEDIA COVERAGE

STATEMENT ISSUED BY DR GERHARD KOORNHOF, MP
UDM SPOKESPERSON FOR PUBLIC ACCOUNTS

The decision by the Public Protector not to allow the electronic media to broadcast or record the public hearings into the arms deal investigation is cause for grave concern. The Investigating team should have anticipated this dilemma when they decided that certain aspects of the investigation would be conducted through public hearings.

It is now weeks after the first sitting of the public hearings, and not a single piece of evidence has been led. This is just the latest in a string of delays and indecisiveness that bring the credibility of the investigation into question.

The judgement today to dismiss the applications of the electronic media, makes a mockery of the so-called "public" aspect of these hearings. It now appears that journalists may take notes, but can only take photos or make recordings before testimony is led. This raises more questions about the penness of the process and the transparency of the investigation.

The clumsy handling of the investigation up to date leaves much to be desired. The UDM remains concerned about the unprecedented step to conduct public hearings into certain aspects of the arms deal. The UDM anticipated these problems weeks ago, and warned then that it would be counter-productive.


Enquiries:
Dr Gerhard Koornhof, MP
UDM Spokesperson for Public Accounts

Pretoria
11 June 2001

Back to 2001 media releases
Back to Arms Deal Page