SANDF deployment to Cape Flats kept vague for 'element of surprise' - defence minister

2019-07-17 11:20
Law enforcement officers during an operation in Philippi, Cape Town. (Jaco Marais, file)

Law enforcement officers during an operation in Philippi, Cape Town. (Jaco Marais, file)

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

Although the army will be deployed to violence-plagued communities on the Cape Flats, the precise details of when they are expected to start work has been kept vague as part of an "element of surprise".

Gang-infested areas have been waiting since Thursday evening for the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) to be deployed to 10 neighbourhoods announced by Minister of Police Bheki Cele.

However, mission readiness training and a delay in important deployment paperwork has held up the imminent deployment, News24 reported earlier this week.

WATCH: Troops undergo 'mission ready training' ahead of Cape Flats deployment

Now, Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has given another reason for the vagueness around deployment.

"It's always better to have an element of surprise," she said at a briefing before her budget vote speech in Parliament.

She conceded that the defence force wasn't trained to control crowds, but said the army could nonetheless play a role in stabilising the situation. She said the gangs "ruling" the area were "undermining the authority of the state".

"It is appropriate that the commander-in-chief (President Cyril Ramaphosa) deployed the defence force," she said.

She said they didn't expect the use of excessive force and hoped the soldiers wouldn't be provoked to respond in "a certain way".

SANDF confirmed on Tuesday that the army deployment was definitely going ahead, but that they were awaiting the finalisation of deployment papers, SAFM reported.

GET THE NEWS at your fingertips and download the News24 app for Android here now. Get it for your iPhone here.

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

Read more on:    police  |  sandf  |  nosiviwe mapisa-nqakula  |  cape town  |  gangs  |  gang violence  |  crime

Inside News24

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.