Fri Oct 28 04:32:14 SAST 2016
Order restored at Sun City Prison after fiery protest over inmates’ TVs

Correctional Services said that “matters are under control” at Johannesburg’s Sun City Prison on Wed.

Task team's plan to look after military veterans

By Anna Majavu | Nov 05, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

IF GOVERNMENT does not take care of its military veterans they are likely to sell their skills to the highest bidder, including crime syndicates or mercenary groups, Parliament was told.

Presenting the long-awaited report from the ministerial task team on military veterans yesterday, Deputy Defence and Military Veterans Minister Thabang Makwetla said a unit would be set up in his department dedicated to former soldiers.

Former Umkhonto weSizwe military intelligence chief General Keith Mokoape said the aim was to bring all South Africans with a military background into the system.

"This would prevent military veterans from being forced into situations where they had to "sell their skills to the highest bidder", Mokoape said.

The task team told Parliament's portfolio committee that they would redraft the 1996 list of military veterans to include freedom fighters. The task team defines a military veteran as any "South African citizen who served before 1994 in military formations on both sides of the conflict" including members of the apartheid army who retired after 1994.

But benefits will be given based on how poor the veteran is, their degree of involvement - whether they were imprisoned during the struggle, how long they fought for and if they suffered any disability.

Makwetla said the government also wanted to set up a dedicated organisation within the government with resources to deal with veteran activists who were "just as destitute" as military veterans.

Looking after military veterans only would make the activists' conditions "stick out like a sore thumb", Makwetla said.

Bishop Tholo, a former MK fighter, described the task team's plans as "very, very good".


Login OR Join up TO COMMENT