Picture: Nqobile Mbonambi/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
Picture: Nqobile Mbonambi/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

MPs meet over deployment of 10 000 soldiers during local government elections

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Oct 29, 2021

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Cape Town - MPs are meeting on Friday to consider the decision of President Cyril Ramaphosa to deploy 10 000 soldiers during the local government elections.

The deployment of the army will start on Saturday until next Wednesday. This would be when the country would be waiting for the results on Thursday from the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC).

Co-chairpersons of the joint standing committee on defence, Cyril Xaba and Elleck Nchabeleng, said this was an important meeting for them to look at the deployment.

This comes after Ramaphosa wrote to Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula and National Council of Provinces chairperson Amos Masondo that he would deploy 10 000 soldiers to back up the SAPS in the elections.

“The letter is as per Section 201 (3) and (4) of the Constitution that compels the President to inform Parliament of any deployment of the SANDF. The President authorised the employment of the ten thousand (10 000) members of the SANDF for the period from 30 October 2021 to 03 November 2021, with the expected R47.2 million cost to be incurred for the employment of members of the SANDF,” said Xaba and Nchabeleng.

Police Minister Bheki Cele has said they had identified hotspot areas in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and Eastern and Western Cape.

This is where they will deploy more soldiers and police to ensure the safety and security of the voters and to protect the voting stations.

In some of the areas, candidate councillors have been attacked and killed.

The police and other law enforcement agencies would also keep an eye on areas where there are threats of violence.

The soldiers have been roped in to ensure there was stability in the country during the elections.

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Political Bureau

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