SAAF has no Gripen support contract
Written by Guy Martin, Wednesday, 17 July 2013
Magnus Lewis-Olsson, President of Saab South Africa, told defenceWeb yesterday at the Land Forces Africa conference in Pretoria the SAAF had been living on interim support contracts, but since April had no support contracts at all.
Lewis-Olsson said Saab was hoping to get a support contract in place within the next few months.
He was concerned the SAAF would not be able to operate the Gripen without some form of support contract – the Air Force at the moment does hands on maintenance work, but it is not a good for the aircraft to fly for extended periods without proper maintenance and support.
South Africa ordered 28 Saab Gripen C & D advanced light fighter aircraft in 1999 as part of a “strategic defence package”. The order was later trimmed to 26. The Gripen were acquired as a package with 24 BAE Systems Hawk Mk120 lead-in fighter trainers. In 2007 Treasury put the cost of the Gripen acquisition, Project Ukhozi, at R19.908 billion. By August 2011, the SAAF had spent R151 million on Gripen support.
In March Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula told Parliament 12 Gripens were in long-term storage. This because the SAAF did not have the necessary funding to fly them.
As far back as 2010 previous Defence and Military Veterans Minister Lindiwe Sisulu warned a lack of money could ground the Gripen. That year’s Department of Defence annual report also warned “combined with recent funding cuts for the medium term expenditure framework period, the air force will only be able to sustain the Hawk system”.
“Without adequate funding levels being provided, the air force will not be able to meet its mandate in terms of defence or its support of government initiatives in the medium and longer term. The unwanted reality is portions of aircraft fleets may have to be placed in long-term storage, and certain capabilities, units or bases may have to be closed down,” the report stated.
- SAAF chief to attend war games in Russia next month
- Denel expects Rooivalk production decision later this year
- SAAF chief visiting China
- SAAF Oryx damaged in DRC taxiing incident
- Ex Blue Okavango focuses on regional humanitarian aid
- Big SAAF deployment to SADC regional air exercise
- Saab offering Giraffe radars to meet SAAF’s Project CHUTNEY requirements
- Who has airpower superiority in southern Africa?
- Saab completes Project DESCENT air navigation upgrades for SAAF
- King Air 652 back in SAAF service after extensive refurbishing
Skynet 5A satellite starts move eastwards
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 28 July 2015
The relocation will extend the Skynet constellation coverage and services, providing near-global military X-band and UHF coverage.
Strong order book, growing profit, diversified product offering confirm Denel as Africa's hi-tech powerhouse
by Denel Corporate, 24 July 2015
The company has an order book of over R35 billion, triple the value of secured orders of a few years ago, and a six-fold annual revenue cover.
Southern African Shipyards leads cost management in African shipbuilding
by 6Sigma Naval Architects, 22 July 2015The company is taking part in two tenders for the South African Navy, and has selected the CostFact system to cover its calculation demands.
Paramount Group supports orphanage, homeless shelter for Mandela Day
by Paramount Group, 21 July 2015The Paramount team assisted the Thusong Children's Orphanage and the MES Kempton City Homeless Shelter.
Denel dogs to sniff out rhino poachers in Kruger
by Denel Corporate, 16 July 2015
Specially trained dogs will be deployed in the nature reserve for the next 18 months, in terms of an agreement between Denel and SANParks.
Denel to offer wide-ranging products to African defence leaders
by Denel Corporate, 6 July 2015
It will exhibit these at the Land Forces Africa conference at the Heartfelt Arena in Thaba-Tshwane today and tomorrow.