'Guptagate': SANDF authorised landing
New evidence suggests the SANDF authorised the Gupta jet to land at Waterkloof Air Force base.
JOHANNESBURG - Documents have now emerged apparently showing that South African National Defence Force (SANDF) headquarters was aware of and authorised the landing of the Gupta's privately chartered jet at the Waterkloof Air Force base, contradicting government's claims.
Eyewitness News uncovered the controversial landing on 30 April when 200 passengers arrived at the base to attend a Gupta family wedding in Sun City.
So far five officials in International Relations, Police Ministry and Air Force have been suspended for their part in the debacle.
The _Mail&Guardian _newspaper is reporting that it has seen documents which points to the involvement of senior defence officials.
A letter sent by the Indian High Commission's defence attached to the SANDF requesting authorisation to land at Waterkloof Air Force base is dated from February - more than a month earlier than government claimed attempts were made to secure the base.
The Mail&Guardian obtained three documents which details the particulars of the request, including flight plans and authorisation.
The first letter addressed to SANDF headquarters claimed clearance was needed for the arrival of Indian central government ministers.
The final letter shows that authorisation was granted.
Meanwhile, former ANC Youth League (ANCYL) leader Julius Malema on Sunday called for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to charge the Gupta family with high treason following the landing at the air force base.
Malema echoed a call by the South African National Defence Union (Sandu) that government was using lower ranking officials as scapegoats.
"What the Guptas have done is a serious breach of security. They've done that at the highest level and therefore it requires that we take serious action because those people had intention to undermine our national security."
Several government departments are currently investigating the matter.
On 30 April, Eyewitness News reported the jet chartered by the wealthy Gupta family landed at the Waterkloof Air Force Base.
It was ordered to leave the base and then depart from OR Tambo International two days later.
The Guptas private jet took off from OR Tambo with 207 passengers and 12 crew members after 10pm on Friday.
Meanwhile, the Congress of the South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) has levelled allegations of racism against the Guptas.
The union maintains the Gupta family insisted that only white and Indian staff cook for and drive the guests around.
However, Sun International said it would never agree to let guests dictate the colour of their staff.
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