Judge dismisses soldiers' application

2013-10-08 11:00
SANDF soldiers (File: AFP)

SANDF soldiers (File: AFP)

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Johannesburg - A military court dismissed an application to stop a case against 225 soldiers being charged over an illegal protest in Pretoria in 2009, Business Day reported on Tuesday.

Lawyers representing the soldiers had applied to Military Court judge Colonel Leonard Nxasana on Monday to have the case dismissed on the grounds of undue delays by the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).

The SANDF fired 1 100 soldiers in 2009 after the protest at the Union Buildings, which included SA National Defence Union-affiliated soldiers, for higher wages. After an outcry the defence force was forced to investigate each soldier's case in line with disciplinary protocol.

In May, some soldiers had charges against them dropped due to insufficient evidence.

The parties argued that the court no longer had jurisdiction to hear the matter because the SANDF had not followed its own rules to speedily charge them within six months after SANDF chief General Solly Shoke had written to soldiers indicating the intention to dismiss them.

Prosecution leader Lieutenant Colonel Dolphy Bopape said preliminary hearings to ascertain wrongdoing were conducted and charges were filed two months before the third anniversary of the incident.
Read more on:    sandf  |  military

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