Denel admits flight school bursary to Mahumapelo's son was fraudulent

Denel has told Parliament’s portfolio committee on public enterprises that a R1.1m flight school bursary awarded to former North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo's son has been terminated and will be referred to the Directorate of Priority Criminal Investigations.

The state-owned arms company’s new leadership, including Ismail Dockrat who has been acting CEO for a few days, told Parliament that it was pushing back against a number of questionable decisions made by past leaders which saw Denel needlessly lose money.

The delegation, led by Denel chair Monhla Hlahla said that the bursary awarded to Oarabile Mahumapelo, 20 was declared invalid and fraudulent and had been referred to the Hawks for investigation. 

"We encountered a number of issues with a pilot bursary we awarded. It was not advertised or subjected to proper selection processes. We have decided as a result that we will no longer continue with the bursary policy and it has been terminated," said Denel board member Talib Sadik.

Earlier this year, Rapport reported that in the bursary contract, which it had seen, Denel had undertaken to pay for Mahumapelo's flight classes, accommodation, meals and laundry.

At the time, Rapport reported that when contacted for comment, Denel released a statement saying the bursary was ordinary and that it would contribute to transforming the aviation industry. It later withdrew the statement following a directive from Public Enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan.

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