Cape military veterans set for Reserve

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Pretoria - Defence and Military Veterans Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has announced that some of the Cape military veterans who can still participate in the Reserve Force of the SANDF will urgently be incorporated into the force.

Addressing the veterans during an official launch of the South African Cape Corps Military Veterans Association (SACCMVA) on Saturday at Bonnievale in Cape Town, Sisulu said that she had instructed the Chief of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) to ensure that this was done immediately.

"I have also asked the Chief of the SANDF to look at the possibility of incorporating some of you in the SANDF Works Regiment to train our young soldiers and also help maintain our buildings, you have my commitment that tomorrow is brighter and together we can do more... your lives will never be the same again," Sisulu told veterans.

The SACCMVA is an association which represents former members of the Cape Corps disbanded by the SANDF in 1992 - its members were deployed in Namibia and Angola during the 'bush war'.

Three months ago, Sisulu held a meeting with SACCMVA to look into among others, issues of SACCMVA's recognition as a military veterans association and individual members of the Cape Corps joining the Reserve Force of the SANDF.

During the meeting the minister promised to respond to concerns raised by the association and has since delivered to her promises.

She acknowledged that the department should have put together systems to support the veterans earlier in 1994.

"It took us long to get here, but we are here now and together we must move forward, in my budget speech I said I have recently learned about the plight of members who served in the South African Cape Corps, which was disbanded during 1992, before the integration of forces which formed the current SANDF.

"Most of those members could not be accommodated in the then SANDF units at the time and they neither received any meaningful benefits nor assistance in being re-skilled for alternative employment," said Sisulu.

The launch was attended by the President of the South African National Military Veterans Association, Kebby Maphatsoe and Director General for the Department of Military Veterans, Tsepe Motumi.

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