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CAPE TOWN - State arms manufacturer Denel has appointed Odwa Mhlwana as chief financial officer and Vuyokazi Xaxa as group company secretary and legal officer.
“The new additions to our executive team are critical to create stability in Denel and will contribute to our transformation into a self-sustaining state-owned company,” says its acting CEO Mr. Zwelakhe Ntshepe.

Ntshepe pointed out that both Mhlwana and Xaxa have held acting positions at Denel in the past and have high-level experience in the defence and public sector. Mhlwana was the group finance director for BAE Land Systems, which was taken over by Denel in 2014.

“They will help us to achieve our strategic objectives which are the building blocks of a ‘One Denel’ of the future.”
Xaxa was appointed as acting group secretary last year.

Denel has been in a legal standoff with National Treasury over its attempts to forge ahead with a strategic partnership with a company called VR Laser Asia, headed by Salim Essa, a close associate of the Gupta family. It's business plan showed that the company hoped to make R2 billion over 10 years from its partnership with Denel in the Asian market.

Treasury refused to give the green light, saying the Hong Kong-based company was technically insolvent or there was doubt it could obtain the necessary loans for the joint venture.

Denel suspended Fikile Mhlontlo and Elizabeth Africa as chief financial officer and group secretary respectively in late 2015, along with CEO Riaz Saloojee.

This came a few months before the company announced its plans for a joint venture with VR Laser Asia.

It was announced this week that Parliament's public enterprises portfolio committee would extend its investigation into allegations of state capture at Eskom, to also cover Transnet and Denel.

- African News Agency