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Defence force recruits abused - union

Johannesburg - Allegations of recruits being abused at the Oudtshoorn Infantry School have emerged in a letter sent by a parent to the SA National Defence Force Union (Sandu), Beeld reported on Monday.

According to just two of several complaints laid out in the letter, written by a female recruit's mother, the recruits were burned with cigarette lighters and male instructors kicked women soldiers.

File photo by Matlhodi Madibana. Credit: INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

The union alleged on Tuesday that women at the infantry school were being humiliated for falling pregnant.

Sandu said it would investigate the general treatment of recruits at the base.

According to the letter, recruits were prohibited from seeking help during their first two weeks of training, but were instructed to visit the clinic only to get birth control tablets.

According to the parent, who wished to remain anonymous, male recruits had their faces burned with cigarette lighters.

The mother said she feared for her daughter's safety.

Sandu spokesman advocate Pikkie Greeff said on Friday he had received no feedback from the army about the letter.

Army spokesman Brigadier-General Xolani Mabanga said he was unaware of the letter. - Sapa

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