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Guns, politics, lies: the arms deal’s whitewash commission

By Tara Davis and Deborah Mutemwa-TumboFirst published in the Sunday Times What is the point of commissions of inquiry? Are they powerful tools for investigating issues of public concern that can ultimately bring about justice, or are they expensive political options used by those in power to pacify the public and justify impunity? Corruption Watch Read more >

Arms deal commission FAQ, and CW and R2K’s challenge

What is a commission of inquiry? A commission of inquiry is one of many bodies available to the government to inquire into various issues. Commissions report findings, give advice and make recommendations. While their findings are not legally binding, they can be highly influential. Commissions must act strictly within their terms of reference and ensure Read more >

Arms deal and Seriti Commission FAQ

What was the arms deal? In December 1999, the South African government signed contracts with a number of European defence companies to buy a range of sophisticated military equipment. South Africa purchased: Gripen jet fighters and Hawk jet fighter trainers from the UK/Swedish partnership, British Aerospace (now BAE Systems) and Saab. corvette warships from the Read more >

No basis for corruption case against me, says Zuma

It was a case of déjà vu on Friday morning when former president Jacob Zuma addressed crowds of his supporters outside the Durban High Court, following his brief appearance in relation to corruption charges reinstated against him by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) earlier this year. The case against him, he said, should be dropped Read more >

Zuma’s day in court postponed to June

As divided as South Africans were over his stepping down from office in February this year, so are they once more over former president Jacob Zuma’s corruption trial, which was postponed to 8 June in the Durban High Court on Friday. Judge Themba Sishi adjourned the proceedings shortly after they started, following a request for Read more >

People’s Tribunal releases preliminary findings

Following five days of hearings the five-member panel of the first Peoples’ Tribunal on Economic Crime released their preliminary findings last night. The findings, read out by Justice Zak Yacoob at Constitution Hill, provide a strong call for accountability. They echo the closing message to the People’s Tribunal by South African Council of Churches secretary-general, Read more >

Five days of gripping tribunal hearings

After five days of compelling and disturbing testimony, presentations, submissions and personal accounts, the People’s Tribunal on Economic Crime wrapped up on Wednesday evening. The five-member panel of adjudicators shared their preliminary findings, followed by the opening of The People Against Corruption exhibition. Download the preliminary findings. The evidence presented was just the tip of Read more >

Skeletons emerge at People’s Tribunal

By Kwazi Dlamini The People’s Tribunal on Economic Crime, currently in session at Constitution Hill in Johannesburg, is drawing to a close but it has certainly produced its share of sensational revelations. On Monday Ajay Sooklal, formerly a legal representative of French arms company Thales, dropped a bombshell by revealing a range of key role Read more >

The arms deal: so many questions

• First published in the Sunday Times Civil society groups have gone to court to have the findings of the Seriti commission of inquiry into the arms deal set aside. Chris Barron asked David Lewis, chairman [Note: David Lewis is the executive director of Corruption Watch; Mavuso Msimang is the chairman] of Corruption Watch … Read more >