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Officials were pressured to approve Denel Asia deal, Zondo Commission told

Kgathatso Tlhakudi said questions were raised about the potential conflicts of interest that would arise from the joint venture between Denel and Gupta-linked VR Laser which was based in Hong Kong.

A screengrab of deputy director-general at the Department of Public Enterprises Kgathatso Tlhakudi appearing at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry.

JOHANNESBURG - The deputy director-general at the Department of Public Enterprises Kgathatso Tlhakudi says Denel’s former board chairperson Daniel Mantsha pushed ahead with the Denel Asia deal without following proper regulations.

While testifying at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into state capture, Tlhakudi said questions were raised about the potential conflicts of interest that would arise from a joint venture between Denel and Gupta-linked VR Laser which was based in Hong Kong.

Despite their objections, Tlhakudi said employees were pressured by both Mantsha and then minister Lynne Brown to go through with the transaction.

“It was quite clear that this transaction was a no go. We were cognizant that there was more to this transaction, especially the pressure that we were put under.”

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