News / South Africa

Citizen Reporter
Reporter
2 minute read
27 Oct 2021
9:35 pm

SANDF to be deployed for elections

Citizen Reporter

There is growing concern over political killings in KZN as the country edges closer to the local government elections.

Picture: Citizen.co.za/Tracy Lee Stark

The presiding officers of parliament have reportedly received correspondence from President Cyril Ramaphosa for the deployment of 10,000 members of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).

The troops are expected on the ground from Saturday when the special votes open until next Wednesday.

The deployment will cost just over R47 million.

The deployment of SANDF comes after Police Minister Bheki Cele’s letter to the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Thandi Modise requesting the President to give the SAPS permission to work with the SANDF.

“But the SANDF will not go to the voting stations as it will deal with other instalments like [monitoring] government infrastructure which will help to release the police to focus on the work around the elections,” Cele said.

The deployment follows the murder of a Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) ward councillor candidate who was gunned down in the KwaCaluza area outside Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) last week.

Thulani Shangase was killed after returning from an campaign meeting ahead of the local government elections.

There is growing concern over political killings in KZN as the country edges closer to the local government elections.

Cele further said last week that members of the South African Police Service (Saps) would also be present at voting stations to ensure the safety of citizens, especially at hotspot areas.

“Fortunately, we had a meeting with the IEC [Independent Electoral Commission]. What we know for now is there will be almost 23,000 voting stations in the country.

ALSO READ: How KZN became the breeding ground for SA’s political assassins

“All of them have been profiled in a way that there are those among them which are low-, medium- and high-risk level. So the police are planning around that,” he said.

Additional reporting by Thapelo Lekabe