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Former arms deal consultant a no-show

Fana Hlongwane allegedly facilitated the transfer of R24 million to secure a deal for an arms company.

FILE: The Arms Deal Inquiry underway in Pretoria on 23 August 2013. Picture: EWN.

PRETORIA - Former arms deal consultant and defence adviser Fana Hlongwane has failed to appear before the Arms Deal Inquiry in Pretoria.

Hlongwane, who allegedly facilitated the transfer of R24 million to secure a deal for an arms company, was expected to start leading evidence today.

It's understood Hlongwane arrived at the hearing venue in Pretoria this morning but met with commission chair, Judge Willie Seriti, behind closed doors to secure a postponement.

Hlongwane's legal representative, advocate Jaap Cilliers, is apparently unavailable.

It's unclear when the matter will resume.

An official at the commission says the former arms consultant also asked Judge Seriti to ban the media from taking photographs or video footage of him during his testimony.

It's understood Seriti told Hlongwane that he would have to launch an application and provide compelling reasons for such an order to be made.

President Jacob Zum a set up the inquiry to investigate alleged corruption and fraud during the controversial multi-billion-rand arms deal.