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					EPD 4 MAY 2010                                     Page: 1 of 99

                        TUESDAY, 4 MAY 2010




Members of the Extended Public Committee met in the Old Assembly

Chamber at 14:04.

Acting Chairperson Mr A Mlangeni, as Chairperson, took the Chair and

requested members to observe a moment of silence for prayers or


                         APPROPRIATION BILL

Debate on Vote No 21 - Defence and Military Veterans:


izithwalandwe, Ministers, Deputy Ministers here present, hon

members, ladies and gentlemen, at the end of last month I was

afforded a rare glimpse into the future, a glimpse of hope and

victory: hope, because I was able to see into a future in which

South Africa would be unencumbered by the past, by prejudice and by

bigotry; a future in which every child has the enormous advantage

only a country like ours can give. I saw victory over the

inequitable order of things as we have come to know it.
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I visited a range of our new recruits in the military in their

second month of training. Many of them were from extremely

disadvantaged backgrounds with absolutely no hope. Here they were

overcoming their adversities and inhibitions and proving that, given

the necessary opportunity and space, they too could succeed. In the

navy, for instance, were youth who had never been in water before –

most of them came straight from Limpopo. It was amazing to see how,

in the space of two months, they had not only overcome their fear of

water, but had learnt to swim and survive in water and are now being

taught to dive, paddle boats and read and interpret a map.

Above all, here we had youths that were learning in the most natural

way that the country belongs to all of us. Here we also had youths

from all classes and racial groups who had learnt that racial

integration is the most natural thing when faced with common

problems, common goals, common dangers and a common identity.

The forging of racial harmony was amazing to see. It was a victory

over the illogical. Here, a new bond was being crafted, a new

discourse that understood the strengths of each group and utilised

it for the greater good, where song had become part of the culture

of the navy, to motivate and unify. Here were white and Indian

children singing in Zulu - all in the space of two months. I

realised too that various racial groups that seemed unwilling to

join the Defence Force after 1994 were now finding it an attractive

place to be. It has been an exhilarating experience. And to the
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parents of those children in our care, that we are training, I want

to assure you that your children are in very good hands.

I left these places even more convinced that there could not be a

better equaliser in any society than the Defence Force; that there

could not ever be a better place or a better tool for most of the

problems we grapple with, including the skills shortage problem that

we complain about and the high rate of unemployment. I am convinced

there could not be another solution to the huge glut of unemployed,

disempowered and unskilled youth.

In his state of the nation address the President gave a graphic

analysis of the situation in our country. He indicated that we are

an extremely youthful country and, yet, not investing sufficiently

in its future. These are some of the disturbing figures that have

emerged: that there are more than 3 million young people who are

unemployed, presumably with no prospect whatsoever that they will be

absorbed into a labour market that continues to shrink; that 50% of

this group, which is between 18 and 24, are unemployed. Shocking


Having spent a year in this portfolio and having learnt what I have

learnt, I am formally proposing through Parliament that the country

consider the possibility of creating in the next year national

service in which all youth will be gradually absorbed into our

training facilities. [Applause.]
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What we are offering are skills that each would be able to build on.

We offer training in a discipline that would create a sector,

whether public or private, which is firmly grounded in a purposeful

sense of tomorrow. What we offer is education, in essential respect

for each individual and respect for authority - an element we would

all agree is not in abundance in our youth.

After due consultation with all the necessary stakeholders, we

intend to introduce a Bill that will provide the necessary legal

framework for the creation of this national service. This will not

be a compulsory national service, but an unavoidable service to the


Throughout the world the defence force, that great social equaliser,

is used for precisely the purpose that we propose to use it here

for. Young people are leaving school with no skills and with no

prospect of being absorbed into a labour market that is already

being glutted. Any television footage of service delivery protests

will show you that at the forefront of this, in great majority, are

our youth – with excessive energy, misdirected sometimes, a great

deal of anger and frustration etched on their faces. We as a country

can ill afford this generation that is angry. Our youth are an asset

and we must direct them properly.

History is replete with examples of how turning the youth into a

disciplined purposeful force can change the fortunes of a people.
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Our own history tells how, by using the age cohort system, King

Shaka of the Zulus harnessed the power of youth and changed the face

of the subcontinent forever.

Most of our cultures have a process of a coming of age. This

includes some initiation into responsible adulthood, where a line is

drawn between the childish ways of the past and purposeful and

responsible behaviour that is required of every citizen. We can do

that for this country, because that is the one thing we need - to

build a future for our development and our prosperity, a place where

the young unemployed can find skills, dignity, purpose and


This could be part of our essential education and, in partnership

with the Ministers of Higher and Training, Basic Education, and

Labour, we could create a seamless education system among compulsory

basic education, national service, skills training and tertiary

education, where access to education is not based on class. The

benefits to the youth are enormous; the benefits to society are

incalculable, and for the economy this means a solid bedrock that

will sustain our development.

Should we find that the idea is taken up by the people in our

country, we expect that in the next two years we could go ahead and

build the necessary capacity and infrastructure in the Defence

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I emphasise: this will not be a compulsory national service. We do

not want to repeat the mistakes of the past. On the other hand, we

do not want to throw the baby out with the bath water. There has

been a concern raised in the past about this concept — that, in

fact, if we militarise our youth, we would be turning them over to

society, highly trained to kill and a greater danger than before. We

can interrogate this concern and we will, it is hoped, be able to

show that this is not the experience of countries with military

service; that, quite the contrary, the greater danger is caused by

people who have no purpose, no discipline and who come across guns

that are so readily available in our society.

The past year has been an exceedingly eventful one for me, but one

in which we recorded enormous successes in the goals we had set

ourselves. In taking stock of our achievement in the last year, I

wish to cast your mind back to a promise I made when I appeared

before this august House in July 2009. In my maiden address at that

time, as Minister, I stated:

  I want to assure the Defence Force that their conditions of

  service are a concern. We are acutely aware that the state of

  readiness of the SA Defence Force, SANDF, depends primarily on the

  morale of our soldiers.

I went further to state that:
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  We are considering making a request for a separate dispensation

  for the Department of Defence that would allow us to creatively

  deal with our own needs and the specificities of our own unique

  security requirements.

The request was duly made to Cabinet and approved. We have gone a

long way in establishing a separate dispensation for the Defence

Force. Cabinet also approved the regulatory framework and mechanism

to govern and oversee the dispensation. The dispensation we have

been given has the authority and the regulatory mandate of the

Public Service Commission. Within this environment we have been able

to deal with a number of issues that are uniquely defence related,

and I believe we now have an environment in which we can deal with

our problems and in which we can provide enhanced conditions of


Soldiers are not workers. It is precisely because the Defence Force

is so different from all other arms of state that we demand that we

take extraordinary measures to enforce discipline. Soldiers are

responsible for lethal instruments of ultimate force and therefore

their conduct has had to be stipulated in the Constitution. Our

relationship with the state is not that of a worker; it is not

governed by an employment agreement, but by a solemn oath that is

undertaken by every soldier. This dispensation is regulated by a

Military Commission due to be legislated for, it is hoped, by the

end of this month.
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This dispensation has allowed us to restructure and enhance our

grievance mechanism, which will be further enhanced by the re-

establishment of the Office of the Military Ombud.

We have often been accused of wanting to treat the Defence Force as

special and different. These accusations are repeated with scorn and

with monotonous frequency. At one level it reflects a lingering

attitude, which prevailed when we took over in 1994 — we ourselves

had this particular perception. We had inherited a military state,

and in our quest to rein in the influence of the military, we

developed regulations aimed at bringing down the power of the

Defence Force. In doing so, we may have gone overboard and risked

compromising its strength, its capabilities and its uniqueness.

The Defence Force is special. We cannot deny that. They are special

because they take an oath that commits them to giving their lives,

should the need arise, in order that you and I may keep ours. No

country or nation worth its salt should expect any less from members

of its Defence Force. [Applause.] I wasn’t sure whether we were

applauding for the Defence Force or for Mr Selfe who has just come

in. [Laughter.] I am certain there is no comparison there.


The SA National Defence Force is a proud and disciplined force

because that is its constitutional prescript. This is precisely why

I am still distraught that some of our soldiers went on an illegal
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march to the Union Buildings in August 2009. We will not allow ill

discipline in our ranks, ever, because it destroys the most

fundamental premise of a soldier. We will retain our culture and not

allow anyone to defile our image and the honour of our profession.

Our commitment as the state, to the Defence Force is complete and

unconditional and will not be decided by any ill-disciplined

soldier. The relationship the state has with its soldiers is unique

and based on an exceptional amount of trust and responsibility. It

requires of the state an enormous investment in each member, both in

their conditions of service and education and training. We have been

working on this over the past year and have made significant

progress in a number of areas. We still have serious challenges in

the Defence Force, most of which are as a result of serious

underfunding. If we do not invest in our Defence Force, we are doing

ourselves a grave injustice.

There are few components of the state which have such a high

calling, which demand selflessness, bravery in the face of danger,

the highest levels of discipline and absolute loyalty to the


In peacetime our defence is a force for good. When all else fails,

you can count on the Defence Force in providing whatever support is

required for the state. When faced with disaster, with strikes,
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whether natural or man-made, we can count on these men and women in

uniform to come to provide humanitarian assistance.

Who can forget the rescue mission our forces carried out during the

floods in Mozambique in 2000? Who amongst us can forget the image of

the child born in a tree and her miraculous rescue by our special

forces? We have the child here with us, Chairperson, if you would

allow me to ask her to stand up. [Applause.]

The TEMPORARY CHAIRPERSON (Mr A Mlangeni): Thank you, thank you,

thank you. You may sit down. Thank you.


our child that we rescued under the most extreme conditions, and a

child whose birth was beamed across the world as a wonder of the

Defence Force. We have here with us the two helicopter pilots who

rescued her mother. I ask that Mr Klopper stand up ... [Applause.]

... and, Mr Chris Berlyn, stand up please ... [Applause.] ... and

the medical officer who delivered the child, Dr Nengovhela.

[Applause.] Today, I am the mother of another child that was born in

wonderment, and we have adopted young Rosita as a member of the

Defence Force family. She has become a symbol of the commitment of

and everything the SANDF represents: technical skills and expertise;

humanity; bravery; discipline; and empathy for the plight of those

less fortunate than ourselves in difficulty. This is what we strive

for at all times. [Applause.]
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We are continually working to ensure that our military is infused

with all these noble values. This is the culture we insisted on in

our new democracy, because this is the culture that we had when we

struggled for freedom. We follow a very proud tradition of our

military veterans, sons and daughters of Africa, who sacrificed

their lives for us to be here today, living in peace and harmony and

security. We can only hope that they look at us with the same pride

as a continuation of their work, as we look at them with pride and


However, Chairperson, allow me to digress on this point. Sadly, even

though these military veterans have made such sacrifices for us to

be here today, we have not, unfortunately, given them the most basic

honour that they deserve: a life of retirement in dignity. I was

horrified to learn that the matter of the pensions due to them, that

would enable them to live out their retirement in some acceptable

level of comfort, had not been finalised.

Here are people who fought for our struggle and they are unable to

pay the bonds of their houses. Some of them are living in shacks.

The agreements on their pensions, forged during the negotiations

process that ushered in our democracy and which was endorsed by

successive Cabinets, have not been implemented. The basic principle

of caring for our veterans has not been adhered to. It should be of

great concern to all of us that 15 years down the line, we have not

honoured our commitment to these outstanding people.
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I therefore took the unconventional step of calling my chiefs on

Sunday and begging for money from their meagre budgets to fulfill

this right. All of Sunday and Monday the Military Command Council

met to discuss this unusual posture of a begging Minister, but it

worked. My knees are a bit grazed, but it worked.

It therefore gives me great pleasure to announce to all our

nonstatutory force military veterans that we are now able to make

adjustments in our budget to ensure that we can provide you with a

pension on which you can live. [Applause.] This will be implemented

incrementally, and the first adjustment will be done this month on

15 May. [Applause.] I may add that any of the military veterans is

free to take me out to lunch; they can afford it now. [Laughter.]

My sincere gratitude goes to Gen Ngwenya, Military Command Council,

the Secretaries of Defence and their staff, as well as my advisers

for making this possible. And when I say the whole of Sunday and

Monday, I really mean the whole of Sunday and Monday. They really

went out of their way to ensure that today we are able to give

honour to our veterans.

I did digress, Chairperson, but it was necessary and I am glad you

allowed me to, because this is a major breakthrough for our military

veterans right now. The Deputy Minister, who is responsible for the

new Department of Military Veterans, will deal in greater detail
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with the work we have put in place to ensure that we can honour

these people.

However, as I was saying, hon members will recall, we wasted no time

in establishing the Interim National Defence Force Service

Commission last year whose members, I hope, are with us here because

I am extremely grateful for the work that they’ve put in. The

commission has done sterling work over the past year and we are

already implementing three of its proposals, which I shall now

proceed to read. The first one: the commission recommended and

worked on a draft Bill to enact the permanent National Defence Force

Service Commission. We hope the Bill will go through the

parliamentary process in this month. This will give our dispensation

the legal status that it requires.

The second recommendation is related to the improvement of the basic

salaries of members of the SANDF from salary levels 2 to 12. The

President, as Commander-in-Chief, announced the increases in

December 2009. This directive was effected immediately with salary

increases ranging from 2% to 65% for all members of the SANDF on

this level, with effect from 1 December 2009. We have done this as

part of our commitment to ensuring that members of the SANDF are

remunerated at levels that are in line with their responsibility and

our responsibility towards them. And because we had a new

dispensation, this was possible.
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The TEMPORARY CHAIRPERSON (Mr A Mlangeni): Minister, your time has

expired. I will give you one extra minute.


is still to come. The work of the interim commission has resulted in

our being able to announce now that we owe those soldiers between

salary levels 2 to 12 back pay because the recommendation was that

they would be paid from 1 July. How this will be done will be worked

out with them.

Thirdly, the Occupational Specific Dispensation has been granted to

us by the commission, and this we are extremely grateful for and we

will be giving this out with effect from 15 May.

Chairperson, I did wish I could say more because we have

accomplished more. All we ask from members here is: Please consider

that the Defence Force is stretched beyond its capacity. The Defence

Force has very meagre resources. We ask you for now to accept this

budget while you work on ways in which we can improve this. I thank

you most sincerely. [Applause.]

Mr M S BOOI: Chairperson, Minister and the different heads of the

Defence Force and hon members, as the portfolio committee we still

want to thank the Minister for the leadership she is providing

within the Defence Force overall. We also would like to illustrate

and explain that a perception is being created or a motive that we
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seem not to understand as the portfolio committee. The first thing

that we really want to put into perspective is our interaction with

the Ministry. If we don’t do that, the perception that the Minister

seems not to come to Parliament will continue to grow. We were

totally taken aback on the day when the statement that she wants to

shun Parliament became public.

On the day the Minister made a statement about her engagement with

the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Scopa, she was within the

parliamentary precincts. She made that statement while next to me in

a portfolio committee of Parliament. Now it seems as if there is a

misconstruing of how Parliament is constituted. We think it is very

important for us because, as we deal with issues of accountability,

we should be able to explain this type of relationship.

The portfolio committee calls, monitors and plays an oversight role,

and I must say, at this particular moment, that last year we had

about 20 meetings with the Minister. This year, in the fourth term

of Parliament, we already have nine engagements with her. So the

Minister does remain accountable to Parliament through the portfolio

committee. There is no way that that relationship should be


How the Minister relates to Scopa is a different matter. We have

been able to go to that particular ... [Interjections.] No, no.

Ellis, I will give you a lecture about that. It’s my job. I know
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 16 of 99

that. [Interjections.] What I’m saying is that ... No, no, I know

that all portfolio committees, as instructed by the Constitution,

are supposed to relate in that particular manner. But, at the end of

the day, the responsibility of that committee is to deal with

financial matters. The portfolio committee has an overall duty of

looking over the Ministry. So there is no way that she could have

abstained from that responsibility.

In essence, when we looked into the correspondence, to what is

exactly going on there ...

Mr M J ELLIS: Madam Chair ...

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M N Oliphant): Is that a point of order?

Mr M J ELLIS: It is a point of order, Madam.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M N Oliphant): Please take your seat, hon

Booi. What is your point of order, hon member?

Mr M J ELLIS: Madam Chair, on a point of order: It would appear that

the hon Booi is making particular statements about what the

Minister’s function is and what various portfolio committees’

functions are, when, in fact, he is not in a position to do that.

There are Rules of Parliament that state very clearly what a

Minister’s responsibilities to committees are. I cannot believe that
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what the hon member is saying here is, in fact, parliamentary.

Certainly, it is not correct and, therefore, not parliamentary


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M N Oliphant): Hon member, that’s not a

point of order. He is expressing his opinion on the matter. So, hon

Booi, continue.

Mr M S BOOI: Thank you, Madam Chair.

Mr M J ELLIS: Madam Chair, seriously: May I ask the hon Booi to

speak into his microphone better. [Interjections.] This is a serious

request. Please speak into the microphone so that we can hear you

better. [Interjections.]

Mr M S BOOI: Look, hon member, I respect you, but I also want you to

give respect to what I’m saying. I’m saying that you must listen to

me. I give you respect and I expect you to respect me.

[Interjections.] No, no, what I’m saying is true. It’s a true

reflection because I have engaged with the staff of Parliament to

get clarity on the matter of how Scopa versus the portfolio

committee is working. So I don’t know what you are talking about.

I’m not sucking facts out of my thumb here. I’m dealing with facts -

I have gone out of my way to make sure that we understand our two

roles. It is important to me, when I deal with this matter, that I
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am able to clarify for myself what my responsibility is and what

Scopa’s responsibility is, and how that engagement guides us. I also

need to clarify how that engagement guides us because it is

important for the broader public and the soldiers to understand

whether the Minister is shunning Parliament or not. [Interjections.]

I’m saying it’s my responsibility; there is nothing wrong in doing

that. I’m a member of this Parliament and I’ve got a responsibility

to clarify myself.

What I’m saying is that, in discharging our responsibility as the

portfolio committee, the Ministry has engaged with us about 29

times. The Ministry has remained accountable to the portfolio

committee. This responsibility, which the Minister is meeting, is

something which we really welcome and support. So if the newspapers,

and or any other person, say that the Minister is not responsible,

that she is not coming to Parliament, that is a blue lie. It is a

matter of fact, in the correspondence that I have looked into, that

she was called to come to and observe those particular meetings.

In reflection, it should be clearly said that if you want to summon

a particular Minister, you need to be able to say why you are

summoning him or her. I wanted to solicit a response from the

Minister in order for me to know whether it was within her

parliamentary responsibilities or whether it was part of our own. I

also want to know whether this was about A400 or not. It was clear

to me that the way the Minister conducted herself has been very
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honourable and very supportive. I support her in the efforts that

she has made. [Interjections.] We will always be going ... That’s

part of the budget. We are talking about matters of accountability;

that is, how do we remain accountable to the institution itself.


The next matter that we need to deal with is the issue of

transformation. The Minister has done a very good job and, in the

past 15 years, there has been a lot of good progress with regard to

issues of gender and race. There has been quite a lot of progress

that has been made with regard to those particular issues.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M N Oliphant): Hon members, can we have

one debate. Please give him a hearing.

Mr M S BOOI: We continue to say that the role that the Military

Skills Development System, MSDS, is playing in building and

strengthening the SA National Defence Force, which is currently

known as the Department of Defence and Military Veterans, is one

issue that we should be able to put our hands together in

congratulations to the system. It is exactly doing what has been

expected of it. The MSDS is improving the skills development and are

rejuvenating what the Department of Defence and Military Veterans is

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The Bill that seeks to bring together the regular and the reserve

force, which the Minister is putting in front of us, is a Bill that

we think is going to be helpful to the Department of Defence and

Military Veterans. That is a very progressive step. Minister, you

understand matters of constitutionality and legislation, and that’s

why I like you sometimes. Through that legislation you are providing

for empowerment, because you are saying that we must bring the

reserve force and regular force together so that we can build a

stable force. That is a development that we welcome as it will take

us a little bit more forward. It will also give more confidence to

the MSDS in that when their term comes to an end, they will have a

role to play within the SANDF.

Furthermore, one of the most important things that you have done

during the past year, Minister, is assist us in taking the soldiers

back to the borders. We welcome that effort. That is one effort that

has really benefited us. [Applause.] You have accomplished what we,

as Members of Parliament in the Third Parliament, have all been

grumbling about. You have been able to understand that the role of

the SANDF is to defend the sovereignty of South Africa. That is a

very important and crucial development for us.

What we have seen on the borders and what we have reflected upon –

one of our members will be able to give more substance to that – is

an effort that we know has been made, in that I have gone to the

appropriation to motivate for more. This is because one of the
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citizens of South Africa said to us – something which you have been

complaining about, David – that the 250 times that have been given

to the Air Force is not enough. Something has to be done in terms of

that time. That is why the Ministry and all of us are saying that,

because we have missed that opportunity of being able to get the

budget for the border development, we should be able to try and

motivate for that. It is going to be important.

What we have seen on the borders, something which our members are

going to explain, is really telling us a very sad story about the

decisions that we have made in the past. If somebody can steal a 4x4

in Cape Town in the morning and in the afternoon that particular 4x4

is in Mozambique — as it is, with its number plates — that reflects

very badly on us as citizens or the type of criminals who commit

such crimes. It clearly shows that there is a syndicate that is

running this racket.

Therefore your decision, Madam Minister, of sending soldiers back to

the borders, I must say, is very welcome. It is an effort that will

enable us to call upon every member who is here to debate today to

understand and be able to motivate for the budget that we are

talking about.

Minister, you have also spoken about the military discipline, which

is another piece of legislation that you are putting in front of us.

That is a constitutional obligation. We have to be able to assist
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ourselves. As we were engaging and interacting with the SANDF, I

urged members that we should look at discipline. Among the problems

that confronted us during the strike, or whatever happened at the

Union Buildings, were accusations that the generals had been

misbehaving and that was why there was that type of conduct. But we

got a different impression from our border engagement, where we had

a military high command led by Gen Ngwenya of the Defence Force.

Gen Ngwenya was there himself. He led the high command. He gave us

an opportunity to engage and observe the discipline of the generals

themselves. They were highly disciplined. We can’t say it in any

other way. They set a very good example to us in the way that they

organised and prepared everything. Chief of the Defence Force, we

are very thankful for how you organised that. We say you should keep

it up.

But that does not mean that we should not improve. As the Minister

also says, the way in which we look at the institution of the SANDF

and its uniqueness and the fact that the Constitution emphasises the

question of discipline, means that we should re-emphasise and

strengthen discipline. This will ensure that those who are coming

into the SANDF, as young as they are, understand that constitutional

obligation. They must also understand the fact that we really want

the SANDF to remain a very disciplined force in our times.
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The service commission that we are putting in place and the

legislation that is going to be passed to make it a permanent

development within the SANDF ... [Time expired.] [Applause.]

Mr D J MAYNIER: Chairperson, on 15 April 2010 members of the

Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans finally broke

out of our parliamentary barracks to spend the day at sea on board

on one of our warships, the SAS Mendi. One could not help being

impressed by Captain Bravo Mhlana, Commander Graham Walker and the

young and diverse crew of the SAS Mendi who represent everything

that is good, not only about the SA Navy, but about the whole SA

National Defence Force. [Applause.]

I would like to begin by recognising the loyal, disciplined,

professional members of our Defence Force, many of whom have joined

us here today, who serve under very difficult conditions, sometimes

in the most dangerous conflict zones in the world. Whether you are

from the army, the air force, the navy or the military health

service, we can only say thank you, thank you, thank you for your

service in our country. [Applause.]

The Minister was appointed a year ago, and since then she has

notched up some impressive achievements. This includes the

appointment of a permanent civilian Secretary of Defence, Mpumi

Mpofu, who takes command of the Defence Secretariat on 1 June 2010.

This also includes the employment of the Defence Force to safeguard
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our maritime, landward and air borders, the tough action taken

against soldiers who protested the review of soldiers’ service

conditions, the commitment to deunionisation and the subsequent

appointment of the interim National Defence Force Service

Commission. Anybody who doubts the Minister’s commitment to

achieving outcomes should know that she has promised that if there

is not a clean audit this year, there will not be enough towels to

wipe the blood off the floor. [Applause.]

The fact is that things are moving, perhaps not always in the right

direction, but things are moving. The Minister, the Deputy Minister

and all the staff deserve credit for what has been achieved this

year. [Applause.]

On 26 August 2009, more than a 1 000 soldiers, most of them from the

army, went on a rampage in front of the Union Buildings. Of course,

we should never forget that thousands more soldiers remained loyal,

disciplined and professional and did not march on the Union

Buildings. But, the fact is that on that day we were faced with the

grim spectacle of soldiers, some of them armed with knobkieries,

toyi-toying through the streets, brandishing placards, shouting

slogans and torching vehicles. The soldiers who went on the rampage

did irreparable harm, diminishing the already diminished reputation

of the Defence Force, but they also focused political minds firmly

on the state of the SA National Defence Force. I regret to say,

however, that the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 25 of 99

Veterans knows very little about the state of the Defence Force,

because the Minister has surrounded it with a ring of virtually

impenetrable steel. You will all be aware that the Minister

currently finds herself at the bottom of a deep and very muddy

parliamentary foxhole following her decision to absent herself from

the Standing Committee on Public Accounts.

Rather than stop digging and conceding that she is wrong on this

issue, the Minister has instead chosen to lob a political smoke

grenade into Parliament, designed to obscure and confuse the fact

that, in fact, she can be summoned by the Standing Committee on

Public Accounts, Scopa. Of course, this is not an isolated incident;

it is instead part of a pattern of accountability-busting behaviour

for which the Minister is becoming very well known.

The Minister’s approach to Parliament comes right out of ―Yes,

Minister‖, where officials believe that if people do not know what

you are doing, they don’t know what you are doing wrong. The

Minister’s own defence policy reads that the Department of Defence

and Military Veterans recognises that it has a positive duty to

provide sufficient information to ensure adequate parliamentary and

public scrutiny. The Defence Force’s central argument is that it is

underfunded, which creates capability gaps which, in turn, result in

risks to our national security. The key question therefore must be:

What are these capability gaps and what risks are there to our

national security? The short answer to that question is that we
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 26 of 99

still don’t know because a year after this matter was raised, we

still have not been briefed on the combat-readiness of the Defence


We have never been briefed on the service conditions within the

Defence Force, the salary increases and how they were funded, or on

acquisition of capital equipment for the Defence Force. We have

never been briefed on the Defence Force’s operation in support of

the police for the 2010 World Cup. We have never received copies of

the interim report, especially the so-called ticking time-bomb

report produced by the Interim National Defence Force Service

Commission. And we have never received a copy of the report from the

Ministerial Task Team on Military Veterans.

My requests to visit military bases — Doornkop Military Base, Lenz

Military Base and various other military formations — were

effectively ignored. My parliamentary questions are hardly ever

replied to. More than 10 parliamentary questions were not replied to

last year and more than 20 parliamentary questions have not been

replied to this year. Why does this happen? It happens because the

Minister has tendencies, not the sort of tendencies that the hon

Stella Ndabeni’s leader Julius Malema likes to talk about, but

deeply authoritarian tendencies.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 27 of 99

The Minister is simply not hard-wired for democracy, because when

the Minister is faced with a choice between secrecy and

transparency, you can bet the Minister will always choose secrecy.

The truth is that there has been so much democratic roll-back in the

Defence department that the Minister is in danger of becoming a

modern-day Magnus Malan. [Interjections.]

The fact is that the Minister’s approach has done serious damage to

the relationship between the Defence department and Parliament, and

it has left members of the portfolio committee in the dark about the

true state of the Defence Force, forcing us to join the dots rather

like Cold War Kremlinologists ―reading the tea leaves‖.

Our Defence Force is clearly on its chin straps. A recent assessment

by Jane’s Defence Weekly told us that the SA National Defence Force

is ―in crisis‖. The article goes on to tell us that the Defence

Force ―is in danger of becoming moribund‖, ―incapable of major

operations‖ and is ―clearly in decline‖. The crisis in the Defence

Force, however, is perhaps best illustrated by the state of the Air

Force. Don’t listen to me; listen to Gen Carlos Gagiano, the Chief

of the SA Air Force, who reported last year that ―Until such time

that additional funding can be allocated ... the SA Air Force will

only be able to sustain around 2 000 Hawk flying hours per year

versus the required 4 000 flying hours per year ... and the impact
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                      Page: 28 of 99

being that ... the Gripen System will only be able to be minimally

implemented post June 2010‖.

What does this mean? It means that we have spent R15,7 billion on

fighter jets that we cannot properly maintain and operate. This has

happened, in part, because funds have been sucked out of

―operations‖ and they have been sucked out of ―acquisition‖ in order

to pay for the ballooning costs of personnel.

We gather the army can now only afford to field four companies, that

is, about 580 soldiers on our borders. The navy can only afford to

sail one ship on coastal patrol on a given day and the air force can

only keep two operational Gripen fighters flying.

And what does this all mean? It means, in effect, that we have a

barracks-bound army, a harbour-bound navy and a hangar-bound air

force. The Defence Force is now in serious danger of being reduced

to an armed welfare organisation, whose primary purpose is to

provide employment rather than security. [Interjections.]

The Minister, in introducing the idea of voluntary national service,

appears to have morphed into the Minister of Labour. The idea of

voluntary national service will have to be extensively debated. But

the real question is: Where are the resources going to come from,

and will this not further reinforce the armed welfare role of our
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 29 of 99

Defence Force? There is clearly an operating budget shortfall, and

we need to deal with it as a matter of urgency.

A comprehensive analysis of defence spending by way of an

independent audit should be conducted so that we can find ways of

decreasing spending on support and increasing spending on

operations, because too often we spend our bucks on bling rather

than spending our bucks on bang.

Is it really necessary, for example, for the Defence Force to spend

money on a VIP lounge at the O R Tambo International Airport, on a

fleet of luxury vehicles because foreign military officers cannot be

transported, in the words of one official, in a mere ―Uno‖, and on

36 military attachés who serve in all sorts of obscure nooks and

crannies all around the world?

We must find ways to reallocate resources within the existing budget

towards the sharp end of the Defence Force. The Defence department’s

central argument, as I have mentioned before, is that, despite an

allocation of R30,7 billion, the Defence Force is underfunded by

R7,3 billion in the 2010-11 financial year. That may be, but the

hard fact is this: the Defence department has never produced a

credible case. In fact, it has never produced a case to review the

Defence budget.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 30 of 99

The Department of Defence’s draft policy document, entitled Defence

Update 2035, which should form the foundation of the Department of

Defence’s case and which has cost millions of rand to produce over

the past five years, seems to have been buried and will not, we are

told, see the light of day any time soon.

Never in the history of defence policy-making have so many laboured

so long to produce so little. [Laughter.] But instead of a credible

case, the Defence department argues that the Defence budget should

be increased to approximately 1,8% of our GDP, because that is the

average military burden in the developing world. This is, I am sure

you will agree, a spectacular nonargument and, frankly, complete and

utter rubbish.

What it reveals is that the real problem at the Defence department

is not a budget deficit. The real problem at the Defence department

is a leadership deficit. The Defence department seems to have lost

its way. The strategy seems to be to fill the next pothole in our

pathway. That is why we need strong political leadership that is

able to put an end to the ―amateur heurism‖ we have become used to

and pull the Defence Force up by its bootstraps. There is no doubt

that the Defence Force needs a major overhaul and should be put to


There should be no review of the defence budget until the Defence

department complies with the following conditions: submitting a
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 31 of 99

Green Paper on Defence to Parliament in order to reset our 14-year-

old defence policy; conduct a strategic defence review to rebalance

the force design, force structure, human resource levels and defence

acquisition priorities; and, most important of all, the Minister

needs to voluntarily climb out of the parliamentary foxhole she

finds herself in and begin to build trust and break down suspicion

by being properly accountable to Parliament. I thank you.


Mna L J TOLO: Mohlomphegi Modulasetulo, maloko ao a hlomphegago,

Tona ya tša Tšhireletšo le Bagale ba Sešole, Motlatša Tona wa tša

Tšhireletšo le Bagale ba Sešole le mohlomphegi Booi, re le baCope,

re thekga ditekanyetšo tša Kgoro ya tša Tšhireletšo le Bagale ba


Ke rata go laetša gore ke ka lebaka la eng re thekga ditekanyetšo

tše. Eupša pele ke eya fao, e re ke le tsebiše gore go bolela nnete

re be re tšwile maloba re ile kua ntle ga naga. Seo re se bonego ge

re le fao bagagešo se laeditše go amogela gore batho ba Afrika-Borwa

kamoka ga bona ba swanetše go ba ngata e tee. Ge re thoma re bolela

ka mašole, re bolela ka tšhireletšego ya rena ka moka. Ge o bala

puku ya Baahlodi kgaolo ya bošupa ka Bebeleng e laetša gore mašole

ke dibetša; ke bao ba hlophilwego ke Modimo go šireletša setšhaba.

Ka gona go bohlokwa gore re be ngatana ye tee.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 32 of 99

Ge re le kua mollwaneng, a mangwe a mašole a šupile gore ke Tona ya

Tšhireletšo le Bagale ba Sešole feela yeo e ilego ya etela mellwane

gomme ya rwala kefa letšatšing ya hlehla e lekola legora la mollwane

go tloga ka 1994 go fihla lehono. Ka gona bagagešo, wo e bile mošomo

wo mobotse.

Re le baCope re thekga ditekanetšo tše. Eupša re rata ge nkabe di ka

hlatlošwa gape. [Legoswi.] Re bolela se ka lebaka la gore go sa na

le dinyakwa tšeo di lego gona go dira gore kgoro ye e kgone go ba

gabotse. Legora la go lekana dikilometara tše nne go ya go tše hlano

le ripilwe kua mollwaneng wa Afrika-Borwa le Mozambique gomme

dikoloi di ntšhwa fao, gape le mahodu magareng ga dinaga tše pedi

tše a tšwa gona fao. Ge re be le fao letšatšing leo, mašole a ile a

re laetša mehlala ya dikoloi tšeo di ka bago di tšerwe e sa le

bošego gomme tša tshelela ka Mozambique.

Se sengwe gape ke gore difofane tšeo re bego re sepela ka tšona ke

tša kgale tša go hloka diruthufatša/dihlaboša-moya le dintlwana tša

go ithomela ka gare ga tšona. Moya ga o tsene le go tsena ka gare.

Go nyakega gore go be tšhelete ya go reka dilo tše. Bagagešo, ge re

sa hlokomele gabotse - ke šia go bolela mekgatlo ya majelathoko yeo

e hlolago meferefere lefaseng - ka le lengwe la matšatši re tla

makatšwa ke pomo go tšwa go mekgatlo ye mengwe ge go ka lemogwa

mokgwa wo wa go šwahlela ka mo Afrika-Borwa. Le a e tseba mekgatlo

ye ke bolelago ka yona. Go nyakega gore go šireletšege e le ka nnete

kua mellwaneng.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 33 of 99

Ke lebogile mašole ka taetšo ya bona ya go iphsina ka go šireletša

naga ya ga bobona. Go bolela nnete, ge e le maphodisa wona ga a dire

ka tsela ye — ga re re re a senya — maphodisa ga se a bone fao

legora le le ripilwego gona. Ke mašole ao a tlilego a re lemoša gore

dikoloi di tsene kae. Ka fao, go laetša gabotse gore batho ba ba

šoma ka tshwanelo.

Beng baka, re batho bao ba ka lekanago dimilione tše 39 go ya go tše

40 mo Afrika-Borwa. Re na le mašole ao a ka lekanago dikete tše 74

ge ke sa foše — Tona o tseba ka se go mpheta. Eupša ba re hlokometše

ka moka ga rena. Re rata ge ditekanyetšo tše di ka rotošwa. Tona o

ile a laetša seyalemoyeng gore go kaone ge mohlomongwe re ka hwetša

dipilione tše nne. Nna ke re re ka thaba ge Tona a ka di oketša go

feta fa. [Legoswi.]

Ga ke tsebe dithunya gabotse, efela ke dumela gore Tona o di tseba

gabotse. Ke ile ka kwa ba botšiša mokgalabje yo mongwe wa bagolo ba

mašole dipotšišo letšatši le lengwe ge ke theeleditše seyalemoyeng.

Ba be ba mmotšiša ka ga dithunya tše dingwe tšeo e lego gore mašole

a swanetše go di šomiša nakong ya tlhahlo, eupša o ile a laetša gore

ba ka se kgone go šomiša dithunya tše nakong ya tlhahlo   ka lebaka

la gore ge ba ka di šomiša, go ka se be le tšhelete ya go reka tše

dingwe. Bjale, ga go nyakege gore mašole a thome go šomiša dibetša

ge go šetše go befile. Tšhelete e swanetše gore e be gona gore

dibetša ka moka di kgone go ba gona, gomme mašole a hlahliwe ka

tšona. [Legoswi.] Se se tla dira gore ge bothata bo fihla e be gore
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 34 of 99

ba na le maitemogelo ka ga tšona. Ntle le mo, motho o tla re a sa

lebelelane le tša gore sethunya se beakanywa bjang, ya ba gore

lenaba la gagwe le šetše le mo thuntšhitše. Ka gona, re swanetše re

kopane tabeng ye.

Dikgoro ka moka di bohlokwa. Le nkwe gabotse, ga ke re dikgoro tše

dingwe ga di bohlokwa. Bjalo ka monna wa Mopedi, ka segagešo ge

monna a nyaka go aga motse o nyaka monna goba mosadi wa ngaka gore a

tle a thee motse gore dikebekwa le batho ba kotsi ba se tsene

motseng wa gagwe. [Legoswi.] Se se dira gore bana ba robale gabotse

gomme go se be le mathata. Le rena mo Afrika-Borwa, ge re nyaka go

thea motse wa rena gore re robale gabotse le bana ba rena re iketle

ntle le mathata, re swanetše go thekga Kgoro ye ya tša Tšhireletšo

le Bagale ba Sešole ka maatla. Ge re na le mašole ao a se nago

maatla bagagešo, re kotsing ka moka ga rena - go sa lebelelwe gore o

wa mokgatlo ofe wa dipolitiki. Seo se lego gona ke gore re swanetše

go thekga batho ba gore ba kgone go tšwela pele mošong wa bona.


Go na le seo ke ratago go se botša Tona. Ngwagola ka kgwedi ya

boraro ke le kua gae monyanyeng, ke ile ka bona ngwanenyana a apere

yunifomo ya mašole. O be a efa batho magobe. Ka ge ke le leloko la

komiti ya tša mašole ke ile ka kwa ke ekwa bose gomme ka mmitša ka

re: Ngwanenyana wa ka, na o šomela kae? O ile a mpotša gore ga se

lešole. Ke ile ka motšiša ka ga yunifomo yeo a bego a e apere ka ge

e be e swana le ya mašole. O ile a re ke ya lesogana la gagwe. Ke
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 35 of 99

ile ka mmotšiša gore lesogana la gagwe le kae gomme a ntšhupetša

lona. [Disego.]

Re le ba Cope, re bonela pele le morago. [Tšhwahlelo.] [Legofsi.]

[Nako e fedile.] (Translation of Sepedi speech follows.)

[Mr L J TOLO: Hon Chairperson, hon members, the Minister of Defence

and Military Veterans, the Deputy Minister of Defence and Military

Veterans and hon Booi, Cope supports the budget for the Department

of Defence and Military Veterans.

I would like to indicate the reason for supporting the budget. Let

me first indicate that we went abroad and what we saw there proved

that all South Africans have to be united. When we speak of the

soldiers we refer to the security of the country. Judges chapter 7

in the Bible indicates that the soldiers were chosen by God to

protect the nation.

Some of the soldiers indicated when we were at the border that from

1994 until today it is only the Minister of Defence and Military

Veterans who visited the border and walked in the sun along the

border with a cap on her head, checking the border fence. This is


Cope supports this budget even though we don’t think it is enough.

[Applause.] There are still other things needed for this department
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 36 of 99

to function effectively. A border fence of a distance of about four

to five kilometres has been removed between South Africa and

Mozambique. Cars are smuggled between the two countries through that

gap. On the day we visited the border the soldiers showed us tracks

of cars that might have been smuggled during the night into


We also boarded old aeroplanes that had neither air conditioners nor

toilets. There was no air coming into the aeroplanes. We need money

to ensure that air conditioners and toilets are made available in

these aeroplanes. If we are not careful — I do not want to mention

the names of terrorist organisations that cause chaos in the world -

one day we are going to be surprised by a bomb from one of these

organisations, should they be aware of the gap. You know the

organisations I am talking about. There has to be strong security at

the borders.

I salute the soldiers for proving that they enjoy their work of

protecting their country. To be honest, the police force is not

doing enough — I am not trying to create any chaos — but they are

not aware of the gap. The soldiers were the ones to show it to us.

This shows their commitment to their work.

South Africa has a population of 39 to 40 million. If I am not

mistaken, we have about 74 000 soldiers - the Minister of Defence

and Military Veterans knows better about this. These soldiers are
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 37 of 99

looking after all of us. We wish that the budget could be increased.

The Minister indicated on the radio that it would be better if the

department was allocated R4 billion; I think the Minister should

negotiate for more. [Applause.]

I do not know much about guns, but I believe the Minister knows

better about them. I once listened to a radio interview of an old

man who was a leader in the army. He was asked about guns that

soldiers should use in training and he said that they could not use

those guns for training because they could not afford to replace

them. There has to be enough money for all the weapons so that

training of soldiers includes the use of necessary weapons as well.

Lack of proper training on the use of guns puts the lives of

soldiers at risk. We therefore have to meet and talk about this


All the departments are equally important; I am not saying other

departments are not important. According to our culture as Bapedi,

when a man builds a house for his family, he invites a traditional

doctor to come and protect the house against criminals and

witchcraft. [Applause.] This will help the family members to sleep

peacefully. If we want to sleep peacefully in South Africa we have

to fully support the Department of Defence and Military Veterans. If

the soldiers are not properly trained, they put the lives of all the

citizens at risk, irrespective of what political party you belong
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 38 of 99

to. The soldiers also need our support to work efficiently.


I would like to tell the Minister that I saw a lady dressed in the

South African army uniform at a wedding back home in March 2009. She

was serving food. As a member of the Portfolio Committee on Defence

and Military Veterans I felt good about it and I asked the lady

where she works. She said that she was not a soldier, that the

uniform belonged to her boyfriend. I asked her where her boyfriend

was and she showed me. [Laughter.]

Cope members are visionaries. [Interjections.] [Applause.] [Time


Mnu V B NDLOVU: Sihlalo, neNdlu ehloniphekile, mhlonishwa neSekela

likaNgqongqoshe, namalungu ahloniphekile, ngithi asibonge kakhulu

umsebenzi owenziwa amasosha okugcina uxolo ngaphandle kwezwe

nangokusebenzisana kwawo ne-African Union kanye ne-United Nations.

Thina njengabantu balapha eNingizimu Afrika sikubonga kakhulu

ukusebenzisana kwamasosha aseNingizimu Afrika kanye nabanye ukudala

uxolo emzini nasezindaweni lapho lwalungekho khona uxolo ukuze kube

khona intando yeningi kanye nokuphilisana kwabantu. [Fundamental

human rights].
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 39 of 99

Izinga lokulolongwa kwamasosha alapha kubukeka kusezingeni

eliphezulu kakhulu. Siyakuthokozela thina ukubona izintokazi

nezinsizwa zizimisela emsebenzini wazo ukuvikela izwe lazo nabantu

bakubo ezweni labo ukulandela umkhankaso u-Kgwele, lo mkhankaso

wokusivikela thina nale nendebe ezayo, yalomdlalo omkhulu.

Siyakuthokozela ukuthi kube khona inkece yokulekelela ukuze abantu

bakwazi ukusiza.

Nalaba abasebenza emanzini, siyakuthokozela ukuthi bawenze umsebenzi

wabo ukuze bakwazi ukuvimba laba bantu abafuna ukweba izinto

ezingamagugu ethu ezihlala emanzini. Futhi siyathokoza uma nalaba

abasemoyeni besebenzisa amahora abo okundiza ukuze baqinisekise

ukuthi sivikelekile lapha ezweni lethu iNingizimu Afrika. Ngoba

kusemqoka ukuthi sivikeleke thina zakhamizi zalapha eNingizimu


Okwesithathu siyakuthokozela thina beNkatha yeNkululeko ukuthi

umhlonishwa useze wawuvula uMnyango wokubhekana namasosha lawo

okwakukade eyibambile, lapha kubalwa lawo asekhululiwe nalawo akade

engakhululekile kahle - engenazo izindlela zokuphila. Kodwa sicela

ukuthi awuhlukanise lo Mnyango ube kabili ukuze bakwazi ukucosha

okubafanele. Siyakuthokozela futhi lokho okushiwo wumhlonioshwa

namhlanje ukuthi bazokwazi ukucosha yonke into abafanele ukuyicosha

ukuze bakwazi ukuthi baziphilise bona nezingane zabo ngoba balilwele

lelizwe ngalokho-ke kufanele ukuthi bakucoshe lokho okubafanele.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 40 of 99

Kuyisifiso sethu-ke thina njengeqembu leNkatha yeNkululeko ukuthi

siqinisekise ukuthi umhlonishwa enze isiqiniseko sokuthi nabangekho

kulolu hlelo babekhona ukuze bakwazi ukucosha konke lokhu okufanele

ukucosheka - kungacoshwa abathile kuphela kuthi abathile


Sikuthokozela kakhulu ukusebenza kwe-Landward Defence ngoba

iyimizamo yokuthi kuvinjwe ngakho konke ukungena kwabantu

ngokungemthetho lapha ezweni. Futhi ilekelela ikakhulukazi

amaphoyisa alapha eNingizimu Afrika ngoba anomthwalo nomsebenzi

omkhulu wokuthi abhekane nokuphepha kwabantu lapha ngaphakathi

ezweni. Nawo asehuduleke ngapha nangapha, kuguga amajazi eya le nale

kodwa kungcono ngoba aseyalekeleleka ukuba kube khona abezokuvikela

ukuba bakwazi ukugada emgceleni.

Ngakho-ke sicela ukuthi umhlonishwa akunakisise ukuthi konke loko

kuyenzeka ukuthi atholakale emgceleni ngaso sonke isikhathi ukuze

bakwazi ukuthi abantu bakithi bavikeleke. Laba abangafanele ukungena

bangangeni lapha ezweni. Laba okufanele baphindiselwe emuva,

baphindiselwe emuva kubo, ngoba banamakubo nathi sinamakithi.

Okokugcina mhlonishwa siphakamisa ukubonga ukuqashwa kwalaba abayi-

4000 abaqashwe nje ngoJanuwari ukuthi bakwazi ukusebenza babhekisane

umsebenzi, bakwazi ukukhulisa umsebenzi ikakhulukazi ukuvikela izwe.

(Translation of isiZulu paragraphs follows.)
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 41 of 99

[Mr V B NDLOVU: Chairperson, this august House, hon Minister, your

Deputy, and hon members, I am very thankful to the troops who are

keeping peace outside the borders of the country and also grateful

for their co-operation with the African Union and the United


We, the people of South Africa, are very thankful for the co-

operation of the South African army and others in maintaining peace

in the communities and in areas where it did not exist so that

democracy and harmony amongst humanity could prevail.

It looks as if our army’s level of training is very high. And we are

grateful to see women and men committed to their work of protecting

their country and its citizens in Operation Kgwele, the operation

that is meant to protect us and the coming big event, the World Cup.

We are also grateful that some funds were made available for people

who will be helping in this regard.

We are also grateful to the navy for doing its work in that they are

able to prevent people from poaching our precious marine assets. We

are also grateful to the air force for using their flight hours to

ensure that we are safe in our country, South Africa. It is

important that we, the citizens of South Africa, are safe.

Thirdly, we, as the IFP, are grateful that the hon Minister has

established a department that will look into the affairs of soldiers
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 42 of 99

who have served in the army for a long time, which includes all

those who are liberated and those who are actually not liberated —

those who do not have other means of living. But we request that

this department be divided into two so that these soldiers could be

accorded what is rightfully theirs. We are grateful for what the hon

Minister is saying today, that is that they will get the benefits

which they are entitled to in order for them to make a living for

themselves and their children, because they have fought for this


It is our wish, as the IFP, to ensure that the hon Minister ensures

that even those who are not in this programme are included so that

they too can get what they are entitled to — these benefits should

not be accorded to some people and not others.

We are also very grateful for the implementation of the Landward

Defence, because it is a means to prevent illegal immigrants from

entering this country. It also particularly assists the South

African police, because they have a very big task of ensuring

people’s safety in the country. They have been running from pillar

to post, until their coats were worn out, but it is better now that

they receive assistance from the army as it is now monitoring our


We, therefore, request the hon Minister to ensure that all this

happens and that the soldiers are always stationed at their posts on
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 43 of 99

our borders so that our people are protected. People who are not

supposed to enter our borders should not be inside. And those who

are supposed to be repatriated should be sent back to their

countries because they belong there and we belong here.

Lastly, hon Minister, we would like to express our appreciation in

respect of the 4 000 individuals who were appointed in January to

work with the army in developing the work of protecting the


It is unfortunate that this department has received qualified audits

for the last couple of years, apparently due to mismanagement by

departmental staff in this area. We accordingly urge the Minister to

co-operate with the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Scopa, in

these matters, because it reflects negatively on the department when

it fails to rectify its shortcomings, as has been pointed out by

Scopa. We are not blaming anybody, but we are saying that you, as

the head of the department ...

... faka uswazi ukuze kukwazi ukulunga umsebenzi ukwazi ukuqonda

ngqo phambili. Sengiphetha mhlonishwa ... [Isikhathi sesiphelile.]

Ungakusho kanjani ngingakaqedi? [Uhleko.] [... should crack the whip

so that things could go accordingly. In conclusion hon Minister ...

[Time expired.] How can you say that because I am not done yet?

EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 44 of 99

Mr A MLANGENI: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister Dr Lindiwe Sisulu, hon

Deputy Minister Sampson Makwetla, Acting Secretary for Defence,

Members of Parliament, and our honourable guests, I am not going to

respond to some of the things said by the hon Maynier. I would be

wasting my time, because he spoke as if the Minister is responsible

for the underfunding of the SANDF.

He forgets that it is his duty, my duty and the duty of the entire

Parliament to ask the Treasury to put more money into the SANDF so

that they will be able to carry out their mandate of defending you

and me. That is what we should be doing as a Parliament and not

attack our Minister as if she is responsible for the underfunding of

the SANDF. It is not her fault. It is our fault that we are not

putting pressure on the Treasury.

As articulated in our document Ready to Govern, in the

Reconstruction and Development Programme, and in the Mafikeng,

Stellenbosch and Polokwane conferences, there is a critical need to

ensure peace and stability on our continent and internationally in

order for the objectives of the national democratic revolution to be


Our position as the ANC refers to a wider security dimension, which

emphasises the security of the people, the non-military dimensions

of security, and a holistic approach to peace, stability, security

and development.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 45 of 99

In this regard, the elimination of poverty and unemployment and an

improvement in living standards will ultimately minimise crime and

conflict, especially among the youth, and generally among the people

and countries of the world.

This calls for an integrated approach to development that focuses on

peace and stability in South Africa and the SADC region. This

includes improving the working conditions of security personnel,

improved training, effective border control and the strengthening of

intelligence capacity. It includes the increased responsibilities of

intelligence in defending our democracy, including helping to combat

terrorism. The recognition of the emergence of new threats globally

occasions a need for a well-co-ordinated intelligence-gathering


This budget should assist endeavours to expand and deepen co-

operation among the law-enforcement agencies in the region and

further afield. At the same time, it should enhance cohesiveness in

the improvement of the capacity of our Defence Force and

intelligence agencies to secure the integrity of our nation-state.

Above all, it must help to build a more focused and responsive

Defence Force.

The budget of the department must ensure that security forces are an

essential and strategic service in terms of resources. Section

198(a) of the Constitution states:
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                     Page: 46 of 99

  National security must reflect the resolve of South Africans, as

  individuals and as a nation, to live as equals, to live in peace

  and harmony, to be free from fear and want and to seek a better


Section 200(1) states that the Defence Force must be structured and

managed as a disciplined military force. The Minister has referred

to that on several occasions.

The resolve to live in peace and friendship precludes any South

African citizen from participating in armed conflict, nationally or

internationally, except as provided for in terms of the Constitution

or national legislation. National security must be pursued in

compliance with the law, including international law. National

security is subject, of course, to the authority of Parliament and

the national executive.

Section 200(2) of the Constitution states:

  The primary object of the defence force is to defend and protect

  the Republic, its territorial integrity and its people in

  accordance with the Constitution and the principles of

  international law regulating the use of force.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 47 of 99

The Ready to Govern document states that ―South Africa shall be

committed to resolving conflicts primarily through non-violent means

and security forces shall be subject to checks and balances.‖

As captured in section 200 of the Constitution in postapartheid

South Africa, the Defence Force must be structured and managed as a

disciplined military force. With regard to security services,

section 199(8) states:

  To give effect to the principles of transparency and

  accountability, multiparty parliamentary committees must have

  oversight of all security services in a manner determined by

  national legislation or the rules and orders of Parliament.

Parliament, through the Defence and Military Veterans committee,

should participate in the strengthening of national security,

defence policy, the integration of military veterans and ensuring

public finance management. The security services, including

personnel, infrastructure, readiness, budgets, expenditure and

acquisition, must ensure a stronger, more focused and responsive

Defence Force. This continues to be our commitment as

representatives of the people in line with our electoral mandate.

Part of the key task is to regularly visit the security services at

their bases, as we did last time, borders – somebody will talk about

that, I hope - ports of entry, offices, defence entities and other
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 48 of 99

places of work to remain abreast of developments. In parliamentary

language, this refers to announced and unannounced visits by us or

by joint standing committees, and so on.

In building and strengthening cohesiveness and unity, Members of

Parliament in the Defence and Military Veterans committee are

obliged to exercise a significant degree of confidentiality while

promoting the principles of transparency and accountability.

Internationally, the area of defence has to balance the needs for

secrecy and sufficient transparency and accountability. In our

actions and conscience we need to deepen the capacity of defence

forces in a manner that is responsive.

The need to deepen cohesiveness and unity to ensure a stronger, more

focused and responsive Defence Force requires a focus on the youth

and their needs, especially their skills development. This is

compatible with the state of the nation addresses over recent years.

In line with the government’s view to create development

opportunities for the youth of South Africa, the Department of

Defence introduced the two-year Military Skills Development System,

MSDS, in 2003 — a two-year programme that grants young people,

mostly school-leavers, the opportunity to do voluntary military

EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 49 of 99

The department seeks to enhance the SANDF’s combat-readiness through

annual intakes of young, healthy and fit individuals that are

representative of the country’s population, as part of its

contribution to nation-building. It seeks to afford development

opportunities for the youth of our country.

Subsequent to their basic military training, successful MSDS

recruits are afforded the opportunity to choose training in specific

areas. The ANC supports this Budget Vote. Thank you very much. [Time

expired.] [Applause.]

Mr B H HOLOMISA: Chairperson, hon Minister and Deputy Minister, and

hon members, the UDM supports Budget Vote 21. [Applause.] It is a

privilege and an honour to participate in this debate. For the

record, I am not a member of the Portfolio Committee on Defence and

Military Veterans, nor is the UDM represented in the committee.

However, my interest has been occasioned by my appointment to the

Interim National Defence Force Service Commission where I am

volunteering my services. I am honoured that the Minister extended

this invitation to me to serve on the commission. [Applause.]

In today’s debate I am not representing the commission; suffice it

to say that the commission has interacted with the Minister and the

portfolio committee on its mandate. I am sure that the House has

taken note of the public debate about the commission’s work.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                      Page: 50 of 99

It is worth recalling that the 1998 South African Defence Review

placed more emphasis on social security investment than military

hardware. Investments that should have been made to enable real

defence force priorities, such as training, relevant equipment and

improved conditions of service were neglected. Now these funding

priorities are coming back to haunt the Defence Force. An

illustration of the problem has been the seeming inability of the

state in the past 15 years to protect our borders from illegal entry

by criminal elements, which has resulted in the regular reports of

violent robberies involving them.

If we analyse media reports and the complaints by the Minister in

the recent past, it is clear that, as a result of the arms deal

transaction, the department is struggling to convince the National

Treasury to allocate more funds for urgent priorities such as

relevant equipment, personnel transport and improved conditions of

service. There is a funding deficit for the SA National Defence

Force, which Cabinet needs to address urgently, so that the

department can be in a proper state of readiness.

The steady neglect of the above-mentioned priorities has also had a

deeply negative impact on the morale of SANDF members. We can all

remember the scenes of protesting soldiers outside the Union

Buildings. That should be a wake-up call. However, there is a

misperception that the Interim National Defence Force Service

Commission is investigating that incident directly, including
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 51 of 99

whether there is a need for unionisation within the SANDF. In fact,

the commission is not investigating that matter and the public is

yet to be informed of the specifics of that incident.

One thing that we cannot avoid is that South Africa is now playing

an international security role and will soon be returning as a

member of the United Nations Security Council. This implies far

greater investment in the correct equipment and training for SANDF

personnel to maintain a high standard of professionalism.

On the other hand, we noticed the migration of experienced former SA

Defence Force, SADF; Azanian People’s Liberation Army, Apla;

uMkhonto weSizwe, MK; Ciskei Defence Force, CDF; Bophuthatswana

Defence Force, BDF; Transkei Defence Force, TDF; Venda Defence

Force, etc, soldiers towards retirement. This has been coupled with

well-documented reports of a skills flight to the private sector.

The orientation and integration process that started in 1994 was

always going to be challenging because of the different approaches

to the military profession by the different armed forces.

The emphasis must now be on investing in new future commanders who

will be able to lead the SANDF in its modern responsibilities. Such

an emphasis implies an intensification of training and funding

allocated for this purpose, both internally as well as in

collaboration with friendly armed forces.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                     Page: 52 of 99

Finally, another matter that is of concern is the state of the South

African military industry. Despite South Africa’s long history of

advanced military manufacturing on the continent and our extensive

participation in peacekeeping operations, it is disheartening to see

how little of our local military hardware, such as armed personnel

carriers, is used abroad. It does not serve our national interest to

be viewed as a Father Christmas who sponsors peacekeeping

operations, but does not actively promote the products of our local

manufacturers for this purpose.

Ngoko ke, xa sikukhuthaza Mphathiswa sithi kule nto yokuqeqesha

ulutsha uze ube ngathi uyayithengisa kakuhle kwaye ulwenze uphando.

Abantu abaza kuyiphikisa ngabo bangalwaziyo olu bizo. Ukuqeqeshwa

kolutsha kuza kunceda ekukhuthazeni isimilo kulo olu lutsha. Kwaye

kufuneka nezifundo ezizakufakwa phaya zibe zezobuthanda-zwe.

(Translation of isiXhosa paragraph follows.)

[Therefore, when we encourage you, Minister, we say you must

advertise the youth training as much as you can and conduct some

research.   People who will oppose this are those who are not

familiar with this call. Youth training will help encourage good

behaviour, and the lessons to be given should be on patriotism.]

The TEMPORARY CHAIRPERSON (Mr M R Mdakane): Hon member, I regret

your time has expired. Thank you. [Applause.]
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 53 of 99

Mr B H HOLOMISA: Ndisathetha nam mnt’omdala. Ndiyabulela. [Sir, I’m

still on the floor. I thank you.] [Applause.]

Mr P J GROENEWALD: Agb Voorsitter ... [Hon Chairperson ...]

The hon Minister gave us a fairy-tale story of the SA National

Defence Force; unfortunately, I will have to come back to the


Agb Minister, u het ’n hele paar uitdagings wat vir u voorlê. Die

eerste uitdaging ...

Voorsitter, die agb Minister vra dat ek vir haar kans moet gee om

haar vertaaldiens te kry. U sal vir my’n ekstra minuut moet gee,

asseblief. [Gelag.] Dankie. Is u reg, agb Minister? Goed.

Agb Minister, soos ek gesê het, daar is ’n paar uitdagings wat vir u

voorlê. Die eerste ding wil ek vandag vir u sê: Die Suid-Afrikaanse

Nasionale Weermag is verpolitiseer. Ek wil vandag vir u sê: Jou

politiek bepaal of jy op ’n kursus gaan; jou politiek bepaal of jy

bevorder gaan word of nie.

Dan wil ek vandag ook vir u sê: Jou magsnommer bepaal aan watter

politiek jy behoort. Daar is ’n verskil in magsnommers tussen die

statutêre en nie-statutêre magte. Jou velkleur sê vir jou aan watter

politiek jy behoort. Ek wil vir die agb Minister sê: As u nie
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 54 of 99

politiek uit die Weermag haal nie, gaan u nie ’n professionele

weermag hê nie.

Ek is op rekord waar ek sê dat ek gekant daarteen is dat daar

vakbonde in die Weermag is. Maar ek wil darem ook vandag vir u sê

dat ek nie lede van die Weermag kwalik neem as hulle wel aan ’n

vakbond behoort nie, want daar word nie na hulle griewe geluister


U sê daar is ’n grieweprosedure. Dis korrek. Dis ’n prosedure op

papier, maar in die praktyk het die mense nie iewers heen om te gaan

met hul griewe nie. Dit moet onmiddellik aangespreek word.

Ek wil praat oor dissipline. Agb Minister, ek praat al die afgelope

tien jaar oor die dissipline in die Weermag. Dis onaanvaarbaar dat

’n mens in die media moet hoor van ’n verkragting van ’n

vrouesoldaat hier, of op ’n vredesoperasie daar, of wat ook al. Dis

’n teken dat die kern vrot is; dat daar nie dissipline is nie.

U sê u wil die jongmense van die strate af en in die weermag kry

sodat hulle daar dissipline moet opdoen. Ek is bevrees dat, as ons

die situasie nie daadwerklik gaan aanspreek nie, hulle nie

dissipline daar gaan ontvang nie, maar wel erger gaan word.

Ek kom nou by die begroting. Ek stem saam met wat die agb Voorsitter

netnou gesê het. (Translation of Afrikaans paragraphs follows.)
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 55 of 99

[Hon Minister, you have several challenges ahead of you. The first

challenge ...

Chairperson, the hon Minister is requesting that I give her an

opportunity to get hold of her interpreting service. You will have

to allocate an extra minute to me, please. [Laughter.] Thank you.

Are you ready, hon Minister? Very well.

Hon Minister, I mentioned that you have several challenges ahead of

you. The first thing that I would like to say to you today: The

South African National Defence Force has been politicised. I want to

say to you today: One’s political convictions determine whether one

will attend a course; one’s political convictions determine whether

or not one will be promoted.

I would also like to say to you today: One’s force number determines

the political party that one belongs to. Statutory and non-statutory

authorities differ with regard to the force numbers. One’s skin

colour points to which political party one belongs. I want to say to

the hon Minister: You will not have a professional defence force if

politics is present in the Defence Force.

I am on record for saying that I am opposed to having unions in the

Defence Force. But I want to say today that I do not hold it against

members of the Defence Force if they do indeed belong to a union,

because their grievances are not heard.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 56 of 99

You mention that there is a grievance procedure. That’s correct.

That is a procedure on paper, but in practice these people have no

place to take their grievances. This should be addressed


I want to speak about discipline. Hon Minister, for the past ten

years I have been speaking about discipline in the Defence Force. It

is unacceptable that one should read in the media about the rape of

a woman soldier here or somewhere else during a peace operation.

That is a sign that the core is rotten; that discipline is


You mention that you want to get the youth off the street and in the

Defence Force in order for them to gain some discipline. I’m afraid

that they will not receive any discipline if we are not going to

actively address the situation, but that they can very well grow


I will now talk about the budget. I agree with what the hon

Chairperson said previously.]

Every Member of Parliament who is sitting here has got the

responsibility. And there is a greater responsibility on the members

of the ANC, because they have to ensure that there is enough money

to ensure that we have a defence force. Each and every member must
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                       Page: 57 of 99

ask himself or herself whether he or she wants a defence force or

not. If one’s answer is yes, one will have to start lobbying.

Voorsitter, ek wil vandag sê dat daar nuwe salarisse aangekondig is.

Dit vereis R1,9 miljard, maar die Tesourie het net R600 miljoen

toegestaan — met ander woorde, ’n tekort van R1,3 miljard.

Wat gebeur nou? Hoofde word nou verplig om hul operasionele

begrotings aan te wend om soldate te betaal. En omdat hulle die

operasionele gelde begin aanwend daarvoor, is ons Weermag se

gevegsgereedheid in gevaar. Daar is nie eens genoeg ammunisie om

behoorlike opleiding te gee aan lede van die Military Skills

Development System, MSDS, nie. Daar is nie genoegsame geld vir

ammunisie om te verseker dat die eerste lynfunksie van brigades

nagekom word nie. Daar is nie genoeg operasionele geld om te

verseker dat ons vegvlieëniers in die nag operasioneel kan wees nie.

My beperkte tyd laat my nie toe om veel te sê nie.

Dit is ’n ernstige bedreiging. In die hele, totale jaar sit ons met

’n tekort van R3 miljard rand. Die ergste is, oor die

mediumtermynbegroting verhoog dit oor die volgende twee jaar na ’n

tekort van R4 miljard. Dis ’n taak, veral vir die ANC lede, om te

sorg dat daar geld is.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                       Page: 58 of 99

Laastens wil ek vir u sê, agb Minister ...   (Translation of

Afrikaans paragraphs follows.)

[Chairperson, I want to say today that we have been told about the

new salaries that requires R1,9 billion, but Treasury has allocated

only R600 million. In other words, there is a shortfall of R1,3


What is going to happen now? Heads are forced to utilise their

operational budgets in order to compensate soldiers, and as a result

of this the battle-readiness of our Defence Force is in danger.

There is not even sufficient ammunition to train members of the

Military Skills Development System, MSDS, properly. There are

insufficient funds to purchase ammunition to ensure that the first

line function of brigades is met. There are insufficient funds to

ensure that our fighter pilots are operational at night.

My limited time does not allow me to say too much.

This is a serious threat. We will experience a shortage of R3

billion for the whole year. The worst is that over the Medium-Term

Budget it will increase over the next two years to a shortfall of R4

billion. It is the duty of the ANC members to ensure that there is


Lastly, I would like to say to you, hon Minister ...]
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 59 of 99

I have known you since 1994. You are a hardworking Minister and I

know you as someone who is transparent. Whoever advised you to say

that you don’t need to appear in front of the Standing Committee on

Public Accounts, Scopa, gave you ill advice. Fire those people

because they are not good for you. What they advised you to do was a

mistake. I thank you. [Applause.]


Chairperson, members of the portfolio committee and the House at

large, in his popular work The Art of War, the ancient Chinese sage

Sun Tzu reminds us that military forces consume a nation’s wealth

entirely and that war empties the government’s storehouses. He

graphically captures what happens when your resources get depleted

and you hollow out your military, by saying, ―Broken armies will get

rid of their horses. They will throw down their armour, helmets, and

arrows. They will lose their swords and shields. They will leave

their wagons without oxen.‖ And, I may add, ―They will lose their

discipline and morale, too.‖

Yet it is a syndrome we all don’t wish for our country, because our

Defence Force is the premier guarantor of our freedom. We would all

agree that there isn’t much use to be hard at work, broadening the

horizons of freedom’s possibilities through development, when we

cannot guarantee the sovereignty of our country for self-

EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 60 of 99

Where do we start? I believe we cannot solve problems if we think

the way we thought, when we created them. The question we need to

pose to ourselves is whether we can continue to deliver our defence

function with the levels of resources we are dedicating to this

mandate today. To be fair, the exercise that should help us answer

this question comprehensively is a defence review. However, those

who have been following our defence business can argue that the

product of the previous such exercise became a still-born baby

because we could not fund it.

With all due respect, one can argue that the political callousness

towards our country’s defence needs has made planning in our defence

environment a silly notion. It would appear unavoidable that, to

correct this state of affairs, we indeed need an open, participatory

public debate so that we can all move together. To leave our defence

budget hovering at 1,2% of GDP can only spell further disaster, as

managers are compelled to take misaligned short-term decisions to

keep the organisation going.

As the Ministry and the department, we are not seeking an easy

solution to this problem by pleading for more resources. We have

been self-critical too. We have turned the focus on ourselves in

order to understand the wrong things we have been doing which

aggravated this problem. The departmental task team established by

the Minister to ensure efficiency in managing budgets has started

work. The team is tasked with curbing wastages, curbing leaks,
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 61 of 99

tackling the syndrome of unspent budgets and end-of-year spikes and

duplications, and with reprioritising in order to improve overall

due diligence in managing our resources.

The task team will also address flawed project-finance plans. We

need to ensure that budget plans for systems acquisition take into

account the maintenance costs of these systems throughout their life

cycle. This will improve capability management, especially of new

systems, without pressure being exerted on current budgets. We need

to make sure that where capital projects are delivered through

public-private partnerships, PPPs, we plan their future operational

costs, so that they also do not exert financial pressure on the

department’s budgets. We need to spend enough resources to address

asset management.

The task team aims to provide short-term interventions which can

yield immediate, albeit modest, savings, while commencing on long-

term proposals to reposition the department in a manner that can

result in macro savings. This repositioning of the department would

be realised in dialogue with those in charge of the defence review.

If this work unfolds well, it is anticipated that we can effect the

first modest adjustments and savings in the 2011 budget, followed by

major adjustments and savings in 2012.

It is worth noting that for all these improvements to be tackled

immediately, our department needs to overhaul several of its
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 62 of 99

outdated administration and finance systems, some of which date as

far back as 1982. To do this, we hope Treasury will be kind enough

to grant us a special reprieve from the moratorium imposed on system

upgrading in government.

The most refreshing line item in the budget we are here to get

Parliament to approve is a modest figure of R20 million for setting

up the Department of Military Veterans. On Friday, 30 April, the

Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Minister Sisulu, opened

the offices of the new Department of Military Veterans in Irene,


This development heralds a new era in the history of the military in

this country, especially in the lives of those who sacrificed for

freedom. It is a development which brings healing to the direct

beneficiaries of this programme. It also makes us all, as a country,

even more humane, as we make a sacrifice for those South Africans

who were not found wanting in sacrificing for us yesterday. They

occupied the forward trenches in the unfortunate conflict which

consumed so many of us.

We now have a firm policy in government of support for military

veterans. This will go a long way in restoring pride and a sense of

self-worth in those who served our country and those who continue to

serve our country in the military with honour. This policy will go a
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 63 of 99

long way in turning a military career into an attractive option and

a career of choice among young people in our country today.

The report containing policy recommendations on military veterans is

being taken through Cabinet. It will be presented to Parliament

shortly through the portfolio committee. Later in the year, on a

date still to be identified, the President will officially launch

the services of the new department to beneficiaries and the public

at large. The work done by the ministerial task team on military

veterans is indeed invaluable. The team evaluated several

experiences on how governments provide support to military veterans.

Let us remind the House that the worst-off military veterans are

those who served in the liberation armies, because they were without

any form of remuneration. They were not gainfully employed to

contribute to their pension days and the welfare of their families.

It is important to indicate that it is this group, in particular,

which has challenges of verifying their particulars. We appreciate

that this must be diligently executed to ensure that there are no

legitimate cases which are left out to the discredit of the

department, while, at the same time, we firmly guard against abuse

of this programme.

In its totality, the veterans’ population consists of yesterday’s

problem, which has grown acute because of our neglect. We are also

dealing with veterans who are going into retirement today after
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 64 of 99

serving our country with honour since the SANDF was established

under the new democratic dispensation in 1994. Lastly, the veterans

contemplated, in policy, also include the new crop of SANDF members

who are today, among other things, performing duties as peacekeepers

outside our borders.

From the above, it is pretty evident that with all the best practice

we were exposed to in other countries, we still needed to come back

home and craft a solution that addresses our peculiar concrete

conditions. With everything taken into account, the new policy

objectives are aimed at recognising and honouring all military

veterans in life and memorialising them in death for their sacrifice

on behalf of the nation; ensuring a smooth and seamless transition

of military veterans from active service to civilian life; restoring

individuals’ lost capabilities to the greatest extent possible;

improving the quality of life of veterans and that of their

dependants; and, also, ensuring that military veterans are harnessed

for reconciliation and nation-building.

It became evident quite early in our assignment that to achieve the

above goals, we would be obliged to repeal the current legislation,

in particular the Military Veterans Affairs Act, Act 17 of 1999, and

to amend other pieces of legislation which are administered by other

departments from which military veterans receive other forms of

support from government. These include the Housing Act of 1997, the
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 65 of 99

National Health Act of 2003, and the Social Assistance Act of 2004,

to cite but a few.

An important overriding consideration of the proposed policy is to

ensure that the solution to the problem of military veterans is

located and informed by mainstream government policies, in order for

it to be sustainable. As a result, the proposed benefits are aligned

to government socioeconomic and political policy strategies — for

example, that they are in sync with government’s social-sector

antipoverty strategies and economic development strategies,

including skills development, to cite but a few examples. The other

key policy alignment task which must still be honed is to bring the

recommendations in line with the human resources policy of the

Department of Defence and Military Veterans, so that it seamlessly

factors in the needs of its members at different stages of their

lives, without leaving them vulnerable at any point of their life


The recommendations before Cabinet are wide ranging and, hopefully,

will be well received by all. Every proposed benefit was thoroughly

debated, taking into account not just best practices elsewhere but

also being guided by the domestic concrete material circumstances

pertaining to suitability, alignment issues and affordability. These

issues range from tax matters to job placement versus pension

EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 66 of 99

With the R20 million in the current budget, we hope to get

the department immediately on the road in order to start work on

consolidating South Africa’s database of military veterans and their

dependants, to establish work streams, and to detail the policy

proposals and operational delivery models.

It is envisaged that, whereas this will essentially be a national

department, it will have provincial offices which interface with

provinces in such a way that provinces can also augment these

budgets where they are able to. To improve accessibility, it is

anticipated that regional offices in different provinces will be

established as resources become available.

We are looking at the road ahead with anticipation and optimism. We

are under no illusion that this is going to be a daunting task, but

we accept the challenge without hesitation. We aim to be exemplary

in promoting the philosophy of Batho Pele as the most caring

department in government. We intend promoting the popular slogan

―Nothing for us without us‖ as we deliver to our stakeholders.

However, even as we do so, we will endeavour to build a professional

organisation which employs cutting-edge solutions to address these


In conclusion, in their book about getting big things done in

government, titled If We Can Put a Man on the Moon, William Eggers

and John O’Leary, in extolling the outstanding virtues of two civil
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 67 of 99

servants who are discussed in the book as the type that we need in

order to put a man on the moon, say the following about them:

  They took the responsibility of making government work seriously.

  They were students of process, of data, of the mechanics of

  governing, because they understood that making government work is

  a serious endeavour that deserves serious attention.

And they concluded by saying the following:

  If our government is to claim a reputation for competency, we will

  need a political culture that values and honours the capable

  management of public undertakings, a political culture that values

  the public servants who tell the unpleasant truths to their

  political masters. We don’t have enough of them today.

I thank you. [Applause.]

Mr L M MPHAHLELE: Modulasetulo, Letona le kgabane, ke boka dikgomo.

[Chairperson, hon Minister, thank you.]

From the outset let me assure you, hon Minister, that the PAC

supports the Budget Vote. [Applause.]

As the PAC, we feel that making national service noncompulsory is

not the best option, because compulsoriness and democracy are not
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 68 of 99

necessarily mutually exclusive. Something can be compulsory and yet

be essentially democratic. We all know that in Australia to elect is

not a matter of choice; every citizen is compelled to elect, yet

Australia is called a democracy.

One of the most shining examples of democracy in Africa is Botswana.

We all know that in Botswana, national service - Tirelo Setshaba -

is compulsory. So much as our fear is understandable because of our

painful past, I don’t think making this very important aspect

noncompulsory is going to be an improvement for us. More so, it

could also be open to political manipulation. As the PAC, we feel

that it should be reconsidered and made compulsory instead. With

regard to skills training, discipline, education, etc, the PAC

thinks that our youth really need these.

On the question of military veterans, I think the ex-combatants of

the liberation movement are not getting a good deal. In fact, they

are getting a raw deal, because most of them, as the Minister

rightly indicated, are dying in shacks in squalid conditions. This

is because they don’t have medical cover, they hardly have a pension

and, actually, they are condemned to living in poverty.

We welcome your announcement that they are going to get more money

from 15 May 2010, but they deserve something more than money, and

that something is land. The ex-combatants of the liberation movement

must be entitled to land. This wouldn’t be the first time in this
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 69 of 99

country that people who come from war are given land. [Time

expired.] [Applause.]

Ms M C MOHALE: Chairperson, hon Minister, hon Deputy Minister,

Members of Parliament, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,

according to our Constitution, the primary object of the Defence

Force is to defend and protect the Republic of South Africa, its

territorial integrity and its people. The SA National Defence Force

is further mandated, in terms of the Defence Act of 2002, to be

deployed on the borders and should therefore be the primary agency

to secure our air, sea and land-line borders.

The recent much-needed and welcomed oversight visit by the portfolio

committee to the Zimbabwean and Mozambican borders further

strengthened the belief that the Defence Force should protect our

land-line borders not just because this is a constitutionally

mandated responsibility, but also because we believe that it is the

best suited and trained for this crucial task.

Border control is a contentious issue in South Africa in light of

the eminent kick-off of the 2010 Fifa — Fédération Internationale de

Football Association — Soccer World Cup, the increasing number of

people illegally entering our country and specifically the criminal

elements who exploit our porous borders for illegal gain. This is

unacceptable and should be tackled with the necessary commitment and
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 70 of 99

associated resources to ensure that especially cross-border criminal

activities are rooted out.

One needs to draw a distinction between controlling access at the

ports of entry - which is mainly a function that resides with the SA

Police Service, Home Affairs, customs and other departments - and

patrolling and protecting the borders, which are mainly military

functions. This distinction is important, as it not only indicates

the respective mandates, but also the specific spheres of


This distinction is present because of the apparent lack of a

unified policy and a clear-cut management directive to guide our

border control responsibility. The Border Control Operational Co-

ordinating Committee and the Border Management Agency should

urgently clarify their roles and responsibilities, as there is

confusion regarding their exact roles.

It needs, however, to be stressed that the co-operation on the

borders at ground level between the SANDF and the SAPS is excellent,

as they have liaison committees, share intelligence, and are able to

conduct joint operations. This is why the dithering at micro level

should be cleared up as a matter of agency, as it causes confusion

and frustration at the operational and tactical levels.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 71 of 99

In the same vein, it is also imperative for departments such as Home

Affairs to play their respective roles. It serves no purpose for

soldiers to apprehend illegal border crossers, just for them to be

issued with year-long work permits by Home Affairs. Alternative

arrangements that maintain respect for human rights need to be made

to prevent such a situation. Similarly, the SAPS needs to be readily

available and willing to assist with their powers of arrest and

investigation once soldiers have apprehended illegal border


Protecting our borders should not be viewed as solely South Africa’s

responsibility. The importance of liaising with our immediate

neighbours for co-operation and co-ordination purposes cannot be

stressed enough. We therefore salute the role of the Defence Force

in establishing these interactions with our neighbours to further

enhance the effectiveness of our border protection. This once again

proves that we are a responsible state that strives to live in peace

with its neighbours, and that we are cognisant of their

socioeconomic conditions and the challenges these bring.

The oversight visit by the portfolio committee was utilised to

augment the committee’s understanding of the situation on the

ground, and the challenges and requirements to effectively control

our borders. There are several challenges facing the department in

taking over the land-line border protection responsibilities from

the SAPS. This is, however, an opportunity for the military to once
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 72 of 99

again display their expertise and professionalism as one of the best

armed forces on the continent.

The financial and human resources challenges are key to successfully

executing an effective border mandate. We are therefore of the

opinion that this should be prioritised, and will assist the

department in persuading National Treasury to appropriately fund

Operation Corona. This is not only the right thing to do, but is

needed owing to the wide-ranging negative impact that poorly guarded

borders can have.

Besides the cross-border smuggling of cigarettes, maritime products,

drugs and vehicles, human trafficking is great cause for concern as

poor rural people are often the victims of unscrupulous cross-border

syndicates. We therefore need the Defence Force to deal effectively

with these armed syndicates when they attempt to illegally cross our

land-line borders to carry out their heinous activities.

Operation Corona, which directs the phased return by the military to

our borders, has indicated what the challenges are and what

resources will be required for the roll-out over the next four years

in order to ensure a successful return to the borders. From

repairing fences and purchasing new generation vehicles, to

establishing observation posts and foot patrols, it is clear that

the Defence Force has planned accordingly and that they have the
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                       Page: 73 of 99

task in hand. They, however, need the support of this portfolio

committee to be allocated sufficient funding for this crucial task.

The provisional costs, as indicated by Operation Corona, for

returning to the Zimbabwean border totals R105 million, while that

for the Mozambique-Swaziland borders totals R194 million. A large

percentage of this amount will be utilised to return the equipment,

facilities and infrastructure to the pre-withdrawal period of the SA

National Defence Force from the borders. The magnitude of this task

was chillingly brought home to us during our border visit, as the

condition of the equipment, facilities and infrastructure leaves

much to be desired. We therefore urge all relevant role-players to

support the Defence Force to effectively execute this constitutional


In conclusion, we extend our gratitude to Minister Sisulu, the Chief

of the National Defence Force Gen Ngwenya, and their personnel for

inviting us to experience first-hand the border realities and what

is required of the Defence Force.

We support you and your committed personnel in securing our borders,

and urge that this budget not only be approved, but also that an

additional allocation be granted for this critical border control

responsibility. This is not only imperative to protect our economic

interests, but also to safeguard the people of South Africa. The ANC

supports the Budget Vote. I thank you. [Applause.]
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 74 of 99

Mr S N SWART: Chairperson and hon Minister, severe underfunding of

defence has been a continual thread throughout this afternoon’s

debate. The ACDP has, over the years, consistently raised the issue

of underfunding as have many, if not all, other political parties.

But, at the end of the day, we still approve the underfunded defence

budget as a show of support for our armed forces. Does this not

amount to all talk and no action? And when are we going to show some

real action?

This situation has clearly reached critical proportions with severe

cutbacks affecting all operations. There are also significant

backlogs in repair and maintenance. The existence of ageing and

obsolete equipment and ammunition not only impacts on combat

readiness, but also has implications for the safety of soldiers.

But – Chairperson, and all members of the Defence Force here - there

is good news. This year is significantly different from previous

years. We now have the Money Bills Amendment Act which allows us as

MPs to amend the budget. Therefore, there can be no further excuses.

We need to approach the finance and appropriations committees and

put pressure on them. We need action, and we need to stop talking.

It is time to give the Defence Force the resources that they need.

At the very least, part of the savings affected by the cancellation

of the A400M contract should be given back to the department. Why

has that been taken away? [Applause.]
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                      Page: 75 of 99

Clearly, we also support the cause for a strategic defence review to

determine the exact budget priorities. And whilst there is this need

for additional funding, maximum efficiency and accountability in the

planning and use of limited resources is essential. In this regard,

the consecutive qualified audit reports are disquieting. This

clearly must be addressed and we look forward to a clean audit.

On the positive side, I attended the Navy Day Festival earlier this

year and was immensely impressed with the high professional

standards of all involved. Yes, we can be rightfully proud of those

new frigates and submarines on display. I commend all those involved

in maintaining those high standards under very severe budgetary

constraints. [Applause.]

I would like to encourage all members, not those of only the Defence

Force portfolio committee, to attend these functions. Those of you

who have not attended the naval band’s dry dock concert are missing

something and I would encourage you to attend it.

In conclusion, I wish to thank all the members of the armed services

for their commitment and hard work, often in life-threatening

circumstances. It behoves us as MPs now to ensure that they have

sufficient resources to carry out their mandate. Thank you very

much. [Applause.]
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 76 of 99

Mr R B BHOOLA: Chairperson, we don’t need a Defence Force to protect

us against foreigners. But, at the same time, there are two very

important aspects we must indeed understand. We need a capable

Defence Force to make sure we play a role in peacekeeping efforts.

When proper democracy is restored in the whole of Africa, it is of

tremendous benefit to the country.

Secondly, the government relies on the security family as the

upholders of the Constitution. The MF’s leader, Mr A Rajbansi, was

in the transitional executive council when he served on a

subcommittee dealing with military veterans. Here I want to say that

the MF is very disappointed with the South African government — you

are not treating military veterans in the way World War One and

World War Two veterans were treated. They were given homes; they

were given facilities, etc.

The MF wants especially the ANC to respect the undertakings given at

the transitional executive council to the military veterans and to

make sure that they are given decent pensions and not ordinary

social pensions. In KwaZulu-Natal housing for military veterans has

been promised, but not a single house has been built after 16 years.

We want to suggest very strongly to the hon Minister of Defence and

Military Veterans and the hon Minister of Social Development to give

this the highest priority.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                       Page: 77 of 99

The MF is greatly concerned that the establishment and the migration

of the development of military veterans be closely monitored with

regard to its strategic plan, budget and objectives, and,

importantly, that this is done within the envisaged timeframes.

We are also greatly concerned about the progress made in the long-

overdue renovations - as we heard earlier – and in the repair and

maintenance of defence infrastructure and facilities. We are also

greatly concerned about the role of the Council for Scientific and

Industrial Research, CSIR, and the transfer of delegations from the

Department of Public Works to the Department of Defence and Military

Veterans. We are extremely concerned as to whether a compliance

officer has been appointed, as ―Operation Clean Audit‖ is an

important initiative. The worrying factor is that the Auditor-

General’s report found that insufficient guidance was provided to

staff pertaining to the preparation of financial statements.

However, the MF, hon Minister, welcomes your call that yes, indeed,

we must and we have to treat our military veterans with dignity. The

MF will support the Budget Vote. [Applause.]

Nksz S T NDABENI: Mhlalingaphambili ohloniphekileyo, Mphathiswa

uSisulu ohloniphekileyo, Sekela-Mphathiswa uMakwetla, malungu

nabaPhathiswa abahloniphekileyo, malungu eSebe lezoKhuselo naMagqala

oMkhosi, nani zindwendwe, kuquka nentombi yam, ngqanga neentsiba

zayo. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraph follows.)
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                      Page: 78 of 99

[Ms S T NDABENI: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister Sisulu, Deputy

Minister Makwetla, hon Members and Ministers, members of the

Department of Defence and Military Veterans, visitors, including my

daughter, all protocol observed.]

Chairperson, our budget must contribute to building capacity in the

SA National Defence Force by providing adequate resources so that it

can play an even bigger role in peacekeeping and humanitarian

assistance in Africa and the world.

Members of the SANDF, in conjunction with the SA Police Service,

should ensure peace and stability by way of effective management of

the crime-prevention strategy which has fostered greater co-

operation among the security cluster departments.

This budget must ensure landward, air force and naval readiness for

the detection and neutralisation of all forms of possible threats.

With the 2010 Fifa World Cup and border-related operations, our

Defence Force must really be ready to enhance a peaceful environment

with the necessary resources beyond 2010.

Our understanding of a state of readiness should not mean weaponry,

equipment and the narrow interests of local and international

capital. It should mean building a secure and peaceful developmental

state, and transformation of the Defence Force in a manner that is

underpinned by gender, race and age considerations.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 79 of 99

Our Constitution is unequivocal about the role of defence. We need

to strengthen our flexible approach to defence planning so that it

takes account of the changing need of defence. This calls for

multirole approaches, skills-based capability and the effective use

of the reserve force. Indeed, it requires an integrated approach to

military strategy.

I am happy because the department has a process to promote combat-

readiness, and to do so indirectly through the national commission

of defence and military veterans. This will ensure upgrading of

infrastructure and equipment to ensure safe conditions of service.

This will ensure the recruitment and retention of scarce skills, and

particularly the modernisation of equipment in landward defence, air

defence and the navy with the idea of ensuring combat-readiness.

Our budget must ensure that the SANDF can maintain and sustain its

combat-readiness. It must improve the equipment and ammunition of

the SA National Defence Force.

Combat-readiness also means that the health and safety of our

soldiers are paramount, and these are advanced through this budget.

We welcome an increase in the landward defence programme, compared

to last year’s allocation. We recognise that most of the allocation

is aimed at the modernisation of the landward defence capability.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 80 of 99

This budget must promote the necessary training and skills courses

and the exercising and supporting mechanisms to promote readiness.

It must ensure the maintenance of systems and required equipment.

The number of women in senior positions in the SANDF is still low in

comparison with that of their male counterparts. For instance, the

maritime and air force defence programmes are largely male-

dominated. In the same vein, there is a need to ensure that young

people, both black and white, swell the ranks of the SANDF.

Gender imbalances continue to persist, as revealed by the small

personnel of women deployed in Burundi, the Democratic Republic of

the Congo and Darfur. A total of 15,6% of the women in junior ranks

were in the combat course. However, we must applaud the department’s

plan to address the gender imbalance over the long term by way of

increasing their current recruitment target of women from 30% to 40%

at entry level.

The effective nature of maritime capability within our region is

noticeable. In recent years, maritime and naval power has become

increasingly relevant, both locally and abroad. South African air

force and naval capability needs to be strengthened by this budget

to ensure that it continues to play its vital role on the continent

and in the region.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 81 of 99

This commitment is at the centre of the defence and military

veterans’ science and technology strategic plan. Technological

developments in defence must contribute to the goal of socioeconomic


President Zuma, in his state of the nation address, stated:

  Government will intensify efforts to promote the interests of

  South Africa globally. It will support efforts to speed up the

  political and economic integration of the Southern African

  Development Community region, and promote intraregional trade and


South Africa continues to play a leading role in continental efforts

to strengthen the African Union and its organs, and to work for


The President’s emphasis demonstrates commitment to the Freedom

Charter, namely that ―There shall be peace and friendship‖. This

document contends that economic and political co-operation with

other countries will bring about a better life for all, peace, and a

better Africa and world.

The ANC’s Polokwane conference characterised the current global

situation as a situation in which an exploitative socioeconomic

system ruled the world, and that the danger should not be
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                      Page: 82 of 99

underestimated of widening wars of conquest - and other more

sophisticated means of subversion - in search of resources, markets

and geopolitical advantage. Equally, though, we acknowledged that

most countries have become peaceful and democratic and that peace is

widely shared.

Hon Maynier, the ANC believes in the sovereignty of all nations to

choose their own economic and developmental path, without undue

influence by the developed nations or any other country or party. In

the same vein, you must also take note that our budget debate is

placed within the current global economic crisis.

We really need to commend the leadership of our Minister for her

endeavours to place the department on a new path after years of the

slow pace of transformation. This is clearly demonstrated by the

decrease in expenditure trends, particularly in the cancellation of

the A400M Airbus strategic airlift last year. That decision was

informed by our budget realities and the developmental interests of

our country, and not by dogma.

Hon members, we must assure all South Africans that our boys will be

taking good care of our borders and are ready to deal with anyone

that seeks to undermine our country and democracy by getting into

the country without the proper documentation.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 83 of 99

The security preparations for the Fifa Soccer World Cup are at an

advanced stage to ensure the security of the event and our country.

Therefore all criminal suspects are warned.

Parliament has the power to ensure that national security is

strengthened. Therefore, the redeployment of our soldiers to the

borders and other ports of entry is overdue.

Inkongolo yabantu ithi, ―Whuntshu. Mathol’ anyongande kukudlelana.‖

[Kwaqhwatywa.] [The ANC says, ―Well done.‖ [Applause.]

Mnr D C SMILES: Agb Voorsitter, ek gaan Afrikaans praat.

Militêre opleiding, militêre dissipline, militêre akkuraatheid,

insluitend strategiese beplanning, is sleutelkonsepte en aksies tot

militêre paraatheid asook militêre professionalisme.

Die skaduminister van verdediging, David Maynier, het vandag goed

daarin geslaag om die leemtes in die militêre paraatheid van ons

verdedigingsmag uit te wys aan die Departement van Verdediging.

Aan die ander kant het die agb Minister klaaglik misluk om die

burgers van Suid-Afrika te oortuig dat Suid-Afrika se militêre

paraatheid in orde en in plek is.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 84 of 99

Ons sien vandag dat daar ’n departement van militêre veterane is wat

gestig gaan word. Militêre professionalisme kondisioneer aktiewe

militêre personeel in so ’n mate dat dit, soos in baie ander lande,

nodig is dat ’n agenstskap of ’n volle departement van die regering

van die dag die oorgang van soldate vanaf aktiewe militêre diens na

die gewone burgerlike samelewing moet behartig.(Translation of

Afrikaans paragraphs follows.)

[Mr D C SMILES: Hon Chairperson, military training, military

discipline, military precision, including strategic planning, are

key components and actions to military preparedness as well as

military professionalism.

The shadow minister of defence, David Maynier, today successfully

identified the gaps in the military preparedness of our defence

force to our Department of Defence.

On the other hand, the hon Minister was alarmingly unsuccessful in

convincing the citizens of South Africa that South Africa’s military

preparedness is in order and in place.

Today we see that a department of military veterans is going to be

established. Military professionalism conditions active military

personnel in such a way that, as is the case in other countries, it

is necessary for an agency or a full department of the ruling
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 85 of 99

government to handle the transition of soldiers from active military

service to common civil society.]

Now we see that the Department of Military Veterans was proclaimed

in December 2009, but since then there has been a lot of secrecy and

a lack of transparency. Let me try to describe what has happened:

R20 million has been allocated for this new department and there has

been a new appointment of a director-general. A task team was

established last year. They reported to the hon Minister in January

of this year about their recommendations, and there was a launch on

Friday last week. The picture that we get from the department is

that the launching and everything else is important, but that the

processes and procedures of Parliament are not. That is not


Why am I saying this? This portfolio committee of the Department of

Defence and Military Veterans has yet to see the report. In

addition, we have not been briefed on the contents of that report.

But what we see is the hon Booi standing up here today trying to

defend the hon Minister, when the hon Minister was supposed to

appear before the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Scopa. I

don’t think that the hon Booi should behave in that manner. I think

he needs to be investigated for his behaviour. [Interjections.]

EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 86 of 99

We are very concerned that the Portfolio Committee on Defence and

Military Veterans has not yet seen a Green Paper. Even this

Parliament has never smelt a Green Paper on the Department of

Military Veterans.

So, what is happening in this department? What is happening is

precisely what my colleague has said: There is a tendency towards

secrecy ... [Time expired.] [Applause.]

Ms H C MGABADELI: Chairperson, Minister, Deputy Minister, hon

Members of Parliament, members of the Republic of South Africa at

large, dignitaries and patriots, we greet you all in this debate on

Defence and Military Veterans, Budget Vote No 21. We want to say

upfront that we support this Budget Vote. We really do as the ANC,

and a number of other political parties have said so, too. This is a

sign to say that when it comes to defence, everybody is a South

African. We are thankful for that.

I also want to echo upfront what the hon Ndlovu expressed

appreciation for, that is recognition of the successful, co-

ordinated multidisciplinary approach that was shown by all the

Ministers, everybody involved - neighbours, members abroad – to

solving what happened in Sudan. We really appreciate these co-

ordinated efforts.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                      Page: 87 of 99

For the first time after the 1994 elections, the true nonracial,

nonsexist, democratic South African national recruits were openly

shown on SA Broadcasting Corporation television bidding farewell to

their parents, wives, husbands, sons, daughters, etc, for the

purpose of going and joining this dignified call.

These recruits were no longer singing: ―Saphuma sangena kwamanye

amazwe, lapho kungazi khona ubaba nomama, silandela inkululeko. [We

went in and out of other countries, where our fathers and mothers

did not know, looking for freedom.]

No, they were saying that they were joining to protect the freedoms

that have been won by their forefathers, our sisters, our brothers.

That was the first sign of a practical transformation during our

lifetime. We congratulate those parents, those hon South Africans.

This time their mothers knew exactly where their kids were going.

Those hugs and tears were not tears of pains, but tears of joy on

having to go forward to do what we are debating about. Therefore,

this budget has to take all those things into consideration. You

could see the type of parents who were there. They were not from

wherever; they are from here. This was the real proof of


The significance of these recruits in their numbers, most of them

being young, is that it was only a few months after the march to the
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 88 of 99

Union Buildings. The doubters of revolution in action had already

given up on this department. It will always be like this when the

country begins to be governed by the people for their own country to

benefit both men and women and the generations come.

The committee is here requesting all of you listening to pass on the

message if needs be, analyse it in your own structures including

your own family structures, with the full understanding that the SA

National Defence Force is not a liability, but a huge national asset

for centuries to come.

Today we will help you to understand even better why we say that the

SANDF is a national asset and why we request you to support it. From

this point onwards, please link the budget for the SANDF with the

following important realities, amongst other things: We need to go

home and ask ourselves what it is that we are defending; we need to

know — as patriots and as South Africans — why we are defending what

we say we are defending; we need to know how much it takes to defend

what we are defending, both in terms of equipment and apparatus as

well as in terms of the human resources needed to defend


The hon Tolo said it, and the hon Holomisa emphasised it in a much

simpler way. The hon Minister confirmed this. So, we cannot say that

these are not our constituents, because this is Parliament and we
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 89 of 99

still need to go out and help people in our constituencies to

understand what we are here for.

In trying to link these areas with the budget, it is of great

importance to always keep in mind that this department is not

dealing with markets of different monetary systems. Rather, it is a

unique department dealing with the lives of the citizens of South

Africa, of the Southern African Development Community, of the

African Union, and of the United Nations. We saw what happened in

Sudan. I have spoken about that.

The point we must never forget is that the total wellness of SANDF

members has to be a priority when support for this budget is sought.

You cannot count it; it is not like paying an amount, say R5, for

milk. The wellness of the SANDF should be seen when a member of the

defence walks by. You should feel it: that the person who walked by

is healthy.

We need money for that to be the case. How long will a healthy

African member of the National Defence Force last? We need to know.

The Budget Vote is for a certain number of years; say, from one to

five years. This then begins to tell you how long this person will

live. How much will she or he be able to share and impart of the

knowledge he or she gained to the next generation? Hence, there is

the importance of the military veteran, hon Minister. Such a budget

will enable us to believe, practically, as should be the case, what
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 90 of 99

Fidel Castro said one day when addressing intellectuals like you:

The revolution has the right to exist, the right to develop and the

right to succeed. And the right to be helped sometimes here in South


Our budget therefore has to cover and consider this existence and

this development, as well as cover the right of it to succeed. The

Minister of Defence, in July 2009 in her budget speech, made an

important note about the issue of economy. She said:

  In rethinking our role in the economy, we would like to provide

  training for essential skills in the economy. We believe we can

  play a pivotal role in providing the bulk of this. In any country,

  the defence force is an equal-opportunity institution where young

  people are given skills. We want to inject that into our society,

  because we have huge skills training capabilities and have tested

  this through our Military Skills Training Programme.

The above quote needs our sharp monitoring and recognition of the

fact that the SANDF is not a liability, but an asset. We have a

number of divisions. I want to allow my Minister to talk so I will

give her two more minutes.

For now, I will continue. With regard to all these divisions ...

There are those of us who read the Bible. I also read the Koran

because it is important to know all these things. This Parliament is
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 91 of 99

full of Ministers; most of them men. It is said somewhere in the

Bible, with regard to ministers of religion:

... yizwani-ke nina umfanekiso womhlwanyeli. Yilowo nalowo olizwa

izwi lombuso engaliqondi ufikelwa ngomubi ohlwithayo ohlwanyelwe

ngasendleleni. Yilowo nalowo olizwa izwi lombuso engaliqondi

ufikelwa ngomubi ohlwitha okuhlwanyelwe enhlizweni yakhe. Yilowo

ohlwanyelwe ngasendleleni. Ohlwanyelwe edwaleni nguye olizwa izwi,

alamukele masinyane ngokuthokoza, kepha kanampande phakathi kwakhe,

kodwa uhlala isikhashana nje, kuthi sekuvele ukuhlupheka

nokuzingelwa ngenxa yezwi, akhubeke masinyane. Futhi-ke ohlwanyelwe

emeveni nguye olizwa izwi, kepha iminako yalesisikhathi nokukhohlisa

kwengcebo kuminyanisa izwi, abe ngongatheliyo. Kepha ohlwanyelwe

emhlabathini omuhle nguye olizwa izwi, aliqonde, athele impela

isithelo, omunye aveze ngekhulu, omunye ngamashumi ayisithupha,

omunye ngamashumi amathathu.

Sesinitshelile ama-divisions alomnyango ukuthi yimaphi ngakho-ke

asiphumi nje kohlwanyela uma sicela isabelomali, sicela isabelomali

yalezizinto esenizwile kanye nalezo esingazibalanga. Ngizoma lapho

ngoba ngifuna ukuthi uNgqongqoshe wami akhulume. (Translation of

isiZulu paragraphs follows.)

[―Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: When anyone

hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the

evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 92 of 99

is the seed sown along the path. The seed falling on rocky ground

refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with

joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When

trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall

away. The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears

the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of

wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. But the seed falling on

good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it.

This is the one who procudes a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or

thirty times what was sown.‖

We have told you which divisions belong to this department,

therefore we do not just go and spend the money when we request the

budget allocation; we request that these things we have mentioned

and those that we have not mentioned be budgeted for. I will pause

there, because I want my Minister to respond.]

I want to say: let’s not confuse the Constitution with being yes men

– ―Yes, man‖, ―No, man‖, ―Yes, ma‖. No; the Constitution is clear. I

want to share the following with you because it was in my prose. I

can’t remember the name of the author of the book A Man For All

Seasons – it was stolen a long time ago by these people – but it

EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 93 of 99

  There are those ... who follow me because I wear the crown ...

  there’s a mass that follows me because it follows anything that

  moves. And then there’s you.

Sir Thomas was very brave and was an enemy of men, but his major

enemy had to say, ―And there is you, Sir Thomas.‖ Hon Minister,

respect those who you think are Sir Thomas, because they won’t lead

you into chaos. We support your budget again. Thank you very much.



allow me right from the outset to cover three of the most important

things that we wanted to bring to this Budget Vote debate today.

Firstly, we will be paying back the backlog that we owe our soldiers

of levels 2 to 12 from December to July, as recommended. [Applause.]

Secondly, because we really do care about ensuring that we can keep

the skills in the Defence Force, we will ensure that our members who

qualify for the occupation-specific dispensation, OSD, receive the

necessary salary adjustments from last year July to this year. We

will backdate the salary adjustment to that. [Applause.]

Thirdly, we will be paying out the nonstatutory fund pensions, which

will be sorted out by 15 May this year. For these I’m deeply

grateful to the military command of the Defence Force, the

Secretaries of Defence, the extensive advice that I have been

getting from my office, and my overworked and dedicated staff. I
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 94 of 99

express my sincerest gratitude that today we are able to give this

good news.

We will be engaging with society on the purpose of the national

service and we hope that we will bring a Bill to this Parliament

next year. I would like to thank the hon member from the PAC. I

think what you said on this matter is actually something that I

would like to take into account and put it into some kind of

perspective. I thank you very much for your wise words. We will

consider that. I would like to - not on the land - on the ...


That’s one minute gone, Chairperson. I want to thank hon members who

spoke here in support of our soldiers. What we have done in the

Defence Force, as we speak, is to link this service with our

barracks. As we speak here, and they hear the hot air from across

there, they know exactly what it is that we think of them. There has

been very, very hot air from there.

They have been listening to this budget debate so that they can

understand what it is that we say about them. Somewhere out there

they do know that members of this House have been supportive of them

and understand the conditions under which they live. I would like to

thank very much all those people who have done whatever they can,

including the necessary research, to be here and ensure that they

can add quality.
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 95 of 99

I would like to thank hon Mr Mlangeni for giving a general

perspective of the work that we do abroad. This is a very important

work and it is something that we would like to ensure that South

Africans are kept abreast of. I was very concerned about an

allegation from an hon member that there is rape committed by our

soldiers outside of our country. I would like the member to please

look into the research and not to generalise about this. This is not

what our soldiers are there for. Our soldiers are well known

internationally for the quality of work that they do when they are

out there. The United Nations has given them wide acclaim for the

qualities that they have. So, please, do not use whatever incident

you might have as a perspective to paint my soldiers.

[Interjections.] Sorry, may I please continue. May I please


The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, hon members! Order!


... [Interjections.] I need your protection, Chairperson.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: You are protected, hon Minister.


I would like to thank the hon member Swart. Hon member, I’ve been a

member of the Portfolio Committee on Defence for a very long time,

but I have never heard anybody from outside the ANC speak as
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 96 of 99

eloquently about defence as you did. I am touched to the core.

[Applause.] I’m really touched to the core. I wanted to say that in

case your party is a fading party like some parties ... [Laughter.]

... please do consider, please do consider that any Minister of

Defence might want an adviser such as yourself. Thank you very much

for your advice.

With regard to the matter of the audit, hon Ndlovu, it would be

extremely dishonest for any member not to acknowledge this. I

approached the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans

and they gave me two valuable hours so that I could take them

through the concerns of the Auditor-General, as well as the matters

that we have decided to do and change. This was also an opportunity

for me to take them through all those matters that I had personally

committed myself to doing; and we have done just that.

I committed myself here last year - that we would not have another

qualified report. I want to emphasise that that is what we are

committed to doing. My two Secretaries of Defence have been in

constant contact with the Treasury department and the Accountant-

General to ensure that there will not be any qualifications. Blood

is coming your way, Maynier, so you had better keep quiet.


I have been given the assurance that this is completely in our hands

and it is possible for us to do this. We are very concerned and that
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 97 of 99

was the first thing that we declared. Yes, the Department of Defence

has had very bad and negative audits, but in this dispensation there

will not be; not in my name. I have committed myself publicly and I

came to the committee on my own to give that necessary assurance.

Mr V B NDLOVU: Nkosikazi! [Madam!]


[Thank you, sir.] [Applause.]

I will ignore the theatrics of people who still need to grow up.


The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, hon members!


DA - this is what I have discovered and this is what is now so

problematic for Maynier - they get points for all the questions that

they ask. They get points for all the times that they stand up in

the media. Last year’s points for the most questions asked in

Parliament went to the hon Maynier. [Interjections.] I do not know

what he got for it. He is now in the running for a second award.


Hon Maynier, I have said it to you once and I have said to you a

number of times: the Defence Force does not care what your politics
EPD 4 MAY 2010                                    Page: 98 of 99

is; it absolutely doesn’t care. But they care that they should

provide an excellent service for this country. You sit there,

enjoying a lie and grandstanding. When I came in here, there he was

with a pile of books in front of him, just simply to put on an

appearance. [Laughter.] [Applause.] You have read nothing since you

got into this Parliament, and you have also learnt nothing since you

got into this Parliament. Nonetheless, my soldiers will defend you

because they have honour and that is what they do. [Applause.]

Finally, allow me to direct myself to my soldiers who are out there

listening to this debate. I want them to know that their

responsibilities are enormous, but I have confidence in them. I also

know that, from what has been said here today, they will understand

that the bulk of South Africans who are represented in Parliament

have a great deal of confidence in them. [Applause.] I would like

them to understand this, because the morale of our soldiers is our

responsibility as Members of Parliament.

I also want to say to them: ―Please conduct yourself at all times

understanding that the honour of the position that you hold is an

honour for South Africa. You hold that in our name.‖ I want them to

continue to be resourceful. We do not have the money we would like

to have, but please continue to be resourceful. We are hoping that

we can clean up our act. We are also hoping that ... To all of you

who supported this budget, thank you very much. [Time expired.]

EPD 4 MAY 2010                 Page: 99 of 99

Debate concluded.

The Committee rose at 16:33.

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