Arms deal commission of inquiry postponed

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Johannesburg – The commission of inquiry into the multi-billion rand arms deal in Pretoria has been postponed, its spokesman said on Sunday.

“It’s going to start on Thursday,” said spokesman William Baloyi.

Originally the commission – chaired by Judge Willie Seriti – was scheduled to resume on Monday, with former intelligence minister Ronnie Kasrils set to testify.

However on Sunday, a statement was issued which detailed changes to the sequence of witnesses and the dates of their appearance.

Former defence secretary Pierre Steyn is now set to appear before the commission on Thursday.

Kasrils is then set to testify on Friday.

Jayendra Naidoo – the government’s chief negotiator in the arms deal – is now scheduled to appear on June 9, followed by former defence minister Mosiuoa Lekota the next day.

Trevor Manuel – who was minister of finance at the time of the 1999 deal – has been set down to testify for two days from June 11.

The date for former president Thabo Mbeki’s appearance is still to be confirmed…

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