Denel should have completed the development phase of Project Hoefyster in 2012 and started delivering infantry vehicles in 2015. More than eight years later, after Denel contracted Gupta-linked VR Laser, it's still in the development phase and there's no reliable delivery date in sight, a shocked Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo heard on Monday.
It is "unthinkable" and "unacceptable" that state arms manufacturer Denel is more than eight years behind on key deliverables in Project Hoefyster, a multibillion-rand deal to manufacture combat infantry vehicles for Armscor, State Capture Commission of Inquiry chairperson Raymond Zondo said on Monday.
Zondo expressed his shock during the testimony of Armscor's Sipho Mkwanazi, acting group executive for acquisition and supply chain management at the state-owned military procurement company since 2015.
"These kinds of delays, they reflect nothing else but simply a disaster, isn't it?" Zondo asked on Monday.
"It's just completely unacceptable. How can something that has been required in 2012 and had been promised to be delivered in 2012, eight years later, have not been delivered?"
The deputy chief justice referred to testimony from Denel's chairperson, Monhla Hlahla, who has described Project Hoefyster as the most significant threat to the company's finances.