Concern over stolen SANDF guns and ammo

2015-10-16 20:32
9mm Ammunition. (iStock)

9mm Ammunition. (iStock)

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Cape Town - Almost 33 000 rounds of ammunition were either lost or stolen at the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) for the period 2013/14.

But, for 2014/15, the number was brought down to 19 rounds, according to a reply to a parliamentary question put to the SANDF by the Freedom Front Plus.

Despite the huge drop, FF+ MP Pieter Groenewald, who submitted the question, insisted the large amount of ammunition was extremely worrying "and the minister will have to explain how it is possible that so many rounds were stolen or were lost". 

''What is more, it is 9mm and 5.56mm ammunition which are used in pistols and R4 assault rifles. It is this type of weapons which are used in particular in transit robberies and now also at shopping malls and even farm attacks.

"This situation is clearly proof of poor management, control and discipline in the defence force and there will have to be quick action taken. I will definitely be asking follow-up questions to the minister for further explanation," said Groenewald, who reached the rank of lieutenant when he was in the defence force.

According to the detailed reply, 32 956 rounds of ammunition was lost in the period 2013/14.

For the same year, five weapons were lost and three were stolen. For 2014/15, eight weapons were stolen and two were lost.

Twelve people have been charged in relation to the thefts.

In one case a 9mm Z88 pistol was stolen from the Northern Military Police Region headquarters duty room on 23 November 2014, and recovered two weeks later with the suspect charged and sentence to five years in prison.

In another case involving an R4 rifle, the suspect was found guilty and sentenced by a military court judge.

The SANDF also reported that bomb stand attachments were among items stolen in February 2015. A person has been charged and the case is being investigated.

Read more on:    ff+  |  sandf  |  pieter groenewald  |  cape town  |  military  |  parliament 2015

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