South African Bishops accuse Govt of irregularities in military expenditure
A declaration signed by the Chairman of the South African Bishops Conference has called on the country's government to investigate what it claims are irregularities in its expenditure on arms procurement.
The message signed by the Archbishop of Durban Wilfred F. Napier expressed serious reservations about both the need for sophisticated armaments and the cost of the arms purchases, given the urgent socio-economic needs related to poverty and inequality inherited from the Apartheid regime.
They emphasised that the expenditure is not necessary because the country faces no threat to its security. "It is our view that our greatest security threat is the unacceptable extent of poverty and inequality in our country and the Southern African region."
They said: "President, we call on you to ask the Heath Special Investigation Unit to undertake a through investigation into the arms procurement deal as a matter of urgency. Such an investigation will reveal the nature and extent of the irregularities that have become apparent so that an appropriate and transparent decision may be taken in regard to the deal."