Army becoming a 'state within a state'

2010-10-25 15:20

Pretoria - Defence Minister Lindiwe Sisulu was criticised on Monday for wanting to turn the South African National Defence Force into a "state within a state".

"The minister has surrounded the defence force with a circle of impenetrable steel. This has a risk of turning the defence force into a state within a state," said David Maynier, the DA shadow minister of defence and military veterans, at an Institute for Security Studies (ISS) seminar in Pretoria.

Maynier said members of the portfolio committee were being completely "shut out" with no knowledge whatsoever of the service conditions within the army and on command readiness.

He called for a new white paper on defence including a review.

Maynier was addressing a seminar on the defence amendment bill which is currently under review by Parliament.

The bill gazetted on April 23, seeks to amend the main sections of the Defence Act of 2002.