Some arms deal hearings to be private

The Arms Procurement Commission says some hearings will be closed to the public

The arms deal dossier. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Arms Procurement Commission on Thursday said it may have to hold some of its hearings in private to protect those giving evidence.

The commission said it was now ready to take submissions from anyone who felt they may have evidence of wrong-doing during the arms deal.

In 2011, President Jacob Zuma announced the inquiry into the arms deal, which is made up of three judges.

The commission was formed to probe allegations of fraud and irregularities in the arms deal package, which was signed in 1999.

The commission's spokesperson William Baloyi said they decided that not all proceedings will be held in public.

"The chairperson might decide that this part of the submission might have an implication somehow, therefore there might be a need to conduct the meetings in private."

However, arms deal activists are likely to criticise the decision. They argue that all the commission's hearings should be held in the open.