Claims of abuse at SANDF training school

2013-05-07 10:23
SANDF soldiers (File, Sapa)

SANDF soldiers (File, Sapa)

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Pretoria - Several SANDF recruits were admitted to hospital and one may lose the use of his right arm after a training session at the army’s infantry school in Oudtshoorn got abusive.

Upset parents and the SA National Workers Union (Sanwu) said the school was a punishment camp rather than a training camp reported Die Burger.

Some parents have already initiated legal steps against the army.

Medical officials apparently stopped the training session on Thursday evening and Friday morning after fears were expressed that some recruits would not survive it.

All cellphones were taken from the recruits to ensure that none of them spread pictures or video material and they were sworn to secrecy.

One upset mother said: “The children are living in total fear.”  

The training exercise was intended to punish recruits who had slipped out of the base on Thursday to go drinking at a bar.

“Disciplinary steps were taken against the members. The army is not aware of anyone who might lose his arm,” said spokesperson brigadier general Xolani Mabanga, who added the army would look into the allegations of abuse.

Recruits were apparently told to run with up to eleven poles and every time they dropped a pole, they were beaten with broomsticks.

“They were beaten black and blue. Someone apparently told the sick bay that instructors were busy killing the children,” said one parent.

Sanwu advocate Pikkie Greeff said the infantry school was “like a mafia where no one can gain access to properly investigate”.
Read more on:    sandf  |  george  |  military

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