Defence service commission making inroads

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Pretoria - Despite teething problems and challenges, the Defence Force Service Commission (DFSC) is making a meaningful contribution in the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).

Established in 2009, DFSC’s mandate is to, among others, conduct research and make recommendations for improvement regarding remuneration and the conditions of service of members of the SANDF.

Besides conducting assessments of military bases in and around the country, the commission occasionally travels abroad to visit SANDF soldiers deployed in peacekeeping missions. But under expenditure of the budget remains one of its challenges.

In the period of its existence, the DFSC had undertaken a number of projects within its mandate. These have ranged from delinking salary from rank for members of the SANDF.

“Following research and extensive benchmarking, the DFSC came to the realization that delinking rank from salary is a complex matter and may be too costly for the SANDF. Other alternatives are being explored in light of the socio-economic challenges in the country,” Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said on Tuesday.

She was speaking at the opening of the DFSC satellite office at SAS Wingfield, Cape Town.

The Minister also highlighted that the inputs into the Defence Act amendments have now been tabled before parliament for consideration while inputs into the 2015 Defence Review - phase one thereof, "Arresting the Decline", is already out of the starting blocks for implementation.

Others include the policy on the awarding of death benefits to beneficiaries of members and employees who passed away while deployed in internal or external operations for which no international compensation is paid.

The Minister said she has now approved this for implementation.

Minister Mapisa-Nqakula said the “aforementioned are but a few of the myriad of projects and activities that the DFSC has embarked on, some complete, others still work in progress. The DFSC continues to undertake visits to the various units of the SANDF and these have yielded fruit in that there's now a much better understanding and exposure to the conditions of service of members of the SANDF”.

Despite the hurdles, the Minister was confident that they can overcome with the dedication and resilience of the DFSC leadership, commissioners and staff.

“The DFSC is still a relatively young entity and will take some time to mature to full capacity and with the resource capacity at its disposal.” – SAnews.gov.za

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