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DA slams govt’s R1.8bn lifeline to Denel

The party's spokesperson on public enterprises Natasha Mazzone said National Treasury throwing money at the entity would not fix its systemic challenges.

Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - The Democratic Alliance (DA) on Saturday criticized the R1.8 billion cash injection Denel received from government to stay afloat.

The cash strapped state-owned arms manufacturer had been struggling to pay salaries and said the bailout would help while it came up with a long-term survival strategy.

Denel had asked government for a R2.8 billion bailout.

The DA’s spokesperson on public enterprises Natasha Mazzone said National Treasury throwing money at the entity would not fix its systemic challenges, saying Denel should be partially privatised.

“An incredulous amount of the people’s money have been spent on SOEs and yet the public is getting very little in return,” Mazzone said.

“It is no longer rational or feasible for government to have full ownership of Denel and it should be partially privatised. There are many defense companies in the world that would be interested in buying off shares and government should explore these possibilities.”

She said bailouts provided temporary relief to Denel, but caused permanent damage to the national fiscus.

“By privatising this entity, we will reduce the impact of government guarantees on the fiscus, promote competitiveness, improve efficiency and stimulate job creation.”

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