SANDF troops in Sudan complain

2013-04-22 16:25
(Picture: Supplied)

(Picture: Supplied)

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Johannesburg - Claims that South African soldiers in Sudan are not getting their fortnightly allowance from the United Nations are unfounded, the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) said on Monday.

Brig-Gen Xolani Mabanga said the claims were part of a campaign by the SA National Defence Union (Sandu) to discredit the SANDF.

"There is no way that the UN system can fail the troops of contributing countries," said Mabanga.

However, Sandu spokesperson Pikkie Greeff accused Mabanga of defamation.

"He... does not know what he is talking about. Women deployed in the force cannot buy their toiletries. We are raising a legit concern here," he said.

Two soldiers deployed in Sudan had complained in the past two weeks that they had not been paid their allowances.

UN planes had been unable to get clearance to land near the soldiers' base so they could be paid in cash.

Greeff said there were no ATM facilities in the region.

"The soldiers need to buy water and other essentials so they can live. The [cellphone reception] is also bad, so you cannot always get hold of the troops on the line."

He said the South African troops had been in Sudan for over a year and it was the first time that this happened.

- SAPA
Read more on:    sandf  |  sudan  |  east africa
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