JOHANNESBURG - Denel SOC Ltd has reportedly given the son of North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo a bursary of R1.1 million to become a pilot.

This is according to Sunday reports by both Rapport and City Press which allege that Denel signed a contract to pay for Oarabile Mahumapelo's flight classes, as well other expenses such as accommodation, meals, and laundry.

Oarabile is studying at the prestigious Port Alfred flight school in the Eastern Cape.

According to reports, rules and processes of awarding bursaries were allegedly bent to award the bursary to the aspiring pilot, who applied after the October 2016 deadline.

Denel's bursary programme is for finance, IT, engineering and business management.

Additionally, the school in which Oarabile is allegedly registered to does not fall under the list of accredited schools the funding covers.

The contract for the bursary was allegedly signed by Denel’s CEO, Zwelakhe Ntshepe, who, in the past has been linked to the infamous Gupta family.

The company has described the bursary as ordinary and meant to boost transformation in the aviation industry.

In the wake of the scandal, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan has instructed the entity to retract the bursary.

Gordhan told Rapport that the allegations surrounding the bursary were serious and that the new board at the state-owned entity would look into its “questionable” conduct.