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UNITED DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT

MEDIA RELEASE

 

YENGENI ARMS DEAL ARREST AND CHARGES

STATEMENT ISSUED BY BANTU HOLOMISA, MP
UDM PRESIDENT

The UDM welcomes the arrest and court appearance of Tony Yengeni relating to his luxury vehicle acquired from an arms deal bidder.

The question arises of whether Yengeni was merely mimicking the behaviour of his seniors. In this regard renewed and vigorous attention must be focussed on President Mbeki who allegedly drove an even more expensive luxury vehicle for six months, which was only returned after the public pressure on Yengeni reached its peak.

The warrant of arrest issued for Michael Woerfel, EADS boss, casts new suspicions over the other people who appear to have benefited in a similar fashion as Yengeni. This includes such high-ranking people as General Nyanda, Chief of the Defence Force and the former Chief of the Airforce. There are other notable names of high-ranking government and parastatal officials, as well as Mr Msomi, Member of Parliament for the IFP. We hope that the Scorpions will focus their investigations and possible prosecutions on these people too. We must guard against a situation where Yengeni and Woerfel are made the expedient fall guys, whilst others are protected. In the end every one, regardless of rank or position, must be equal before the law.

These arrests must not be seen as the only aspect of the arms deal that are questionable. In fact it brings the whole deal into disrepute. For instance, the public should know about the companies owned by former Minister Modise and General Moloi who won contracts in the arms deal, this constitutes a clear conflict of interest in our opinion. It is now necessary to determine, once and for all, whether this arms deal must not be cancelled because in was perhaps not in the public interest, but rather in the interest of the elite.

Enquiries:
Bantu Holomisa, MP
UDM President

Cape Town
3 October 2001

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