DoD gives Armscor 50% plus rating on project management

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Overall, Minister Thandi Modise’s Department of Defence and Military Veterans (DoDMV) rates Armscor’s performance on capital and technology projects satisfactory on 37 of 71, Parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Defence (JSCD) has heard.

On the negative side, 15 projects were rated “dissatisfied” and the remaining 19 earned an unsatisfactory rating, according to a presentation.

Elaborating, the presentation listed 10 SA Army capital projects managed by the State-owned defence and security acquisition agency. Just 10% of them rate on schedule with half at risk and the remaining 40% delayed.

Included in the delayed projects is the long running Badger (Project Hoefyster) replacement for the Ratel infantry fighting vehicle (IFV). The presentation has it this project is “partially funded” and “in excess of 10 years behind schedule”.

Others rating “delayed” are the upgrade of the 155 mm G6 (partially funded with a delivery date of 15 March 2021); a “mobile and rapid deployable mass feeding system” (also partially funded and supposed to be delivered mid-March two years ago) as well as gyroscopic theodolites, also partially funded and with the same delivery date as the 155 mm upgrade and the mass feeding system.

A water provision system for the landward force is the only one of the 10 listed taken into service. That, as per the presentation, was on 31 August 2016.

The “at risk” 50% includes an air defence command and control system and situation awareness sensors for GBADS (ground-based air defence system); a new generation operational supply support system (vehicle); a militarised operational earthmoving system and a “transportable camping system capability”.

SA Air Force (SAAF) projects fare better in the DoDMV rankings with 10 (71%) on schedule, four (29%) delayed and none at risk.

Among those on schedule are replacement of aircraft rescue and fire vehicles; updating a Joint Operations Division/SAAF command and control system and what is listed as an air navigation system, light utility helicopter and “Rooivalk combat support helicopter (12)”. The “fifth generation air-to-air missile” (A-Darter) is “in excess of 48 months behind schedule”.

The SA Navy (SAN) has eight capital projects currently residing with Armscor. Of the eight, 89% are on schedule. The MMIPV (multi-mission inshore patrol vessel) – partially funded and with the schedule “being reviewed” is one. The others are “submarine heavyweight torpedo”, “organic core sea mine warfare capability”, “submarine capability”, maritime demolition and ordnance disposal, “vessels upgrade and equipment obsolescence upgrade” and provision of “static communications equipment”.