Nothing normal about militarisation of Parliament - R2K

2017-02-08 12:20
Soldiers rehearse before a previous State of the Nation Address. (File, Netwerk24)

Soldiers rehearse before a previous State of the Nation Address. (File, Netwerk24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town – There is nothing normal about the "trend of securitisation and militarisation" at Parliament, lobby group Right2Know has said.

Responding to President Jacob Zuma's announcement of the deployment of 441 South African National Defence Force members ahead of his State of the Nation Address, R2K condemned the security clampdown in and around Parliament.

"The public deserves answers to some basic questions: what legitimate security threats exist that justify deploying the military? What functions will they perform? How many police are being deployed, from which areas, and what are the safety implications for communities that have fever police on the streets as a result?" R2K said on Wednesday.

Follow the live updates here: Uproar over #SONASoldiers

The trend of securitisation and militarisation, which included the deployment of the army, was not new, the group said.

"Each year, we have seen the securocrats ramping up 'security measures' around Parliament to new levels - and each time the public is told that this is 'normal'. Hundreds of police, called from across the country to the streets around Parliament.

"Barbed wire and water cannons to meet protesters. Riot police to drag out troublemaking MPs. Signal jamming from the State Security Agency. Interference with the television and audio feed. Restrictions on the movement of journalists," were classified as normal every year, R2K said.

"But there is nothing normal about this."

The lobby group said the deployment was a feature of a clampdown, with the aim of shielding the president from political embarrassment and shutting out voices of dissent.

"It is not just in Parliament. It is on our streets, and in our communities. It is on our campuses too. These shows of force are the efforts of paranoid and fearful leaders, whose insecurity threatens everyone's freedoms. And if we do not challenge the creep of securocratic tendencies into our democratic spaces, it will continue until there is no democracy left."

Read more on:    parliament  |  r2k  |  sandf  |  cape town  |  sona 2017

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.


How to open a beer bottle without an opener

Do the right thing and never be thirsty again…


You won't want to miss...

WATCH: Man films himself going down water slide upside down as things go very wrong…
WATCH: Conor McGregor: Notorious the trailer
Best date night restaurants in South Africa
WATCH: Ryan Reynolds offers fans a free tattoo in new Deadpool 2 teaser
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.