Parliament, Friday, 15 October 2021 – The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans (DMV), Mr Cyril Xaba, denounces the actions of a group of military veterans in Tshwane yesterday evening that led to a hostage incident involving two Cabinet Ministers and a Deputy Minister.
“While we are aware and note the challenges faced by military veterans especially regarding the inadequacies with the DMV, we remain unambiguously in opposing coercion and violence as a means to resolve these challenges,” Mr Xaba said.
The committee is of the view that the action of the group yesterday undermined what is a legitimate call for quality service delivery as per the mandate of the DMV and has a potential to delegitimatize grievances that are legitimate and genuine. “We call on the government and military veterans to work together in a constructive manner to find solutions to this impasse,” Mr Xaba emphasised.
The committee has since its inception sought to enhance its oversight over the DMV to ensure that the department operates effectively and efficiently to the benefit of the ex-combatants that played a critical role in the liberation of this country. Through these engagements a commitment was made by the department to resolve the long standing issues such as the cleaning of the military veterans’ database which will create a platform to finally find solutions to the challenges the department is facing, as well as addressing the structural and systemic challenges it is also facing.
The committee appreciated that the department had appointed a Director-General (DG), a position that will bring stability that is instrumental in developing clear strategic objectives to guide the department through this difficult time. The committee calls for restraint and calmness as the recently appointed DG is given time and space to implement interventions to resolve the teething problems.
Resolutions to challenges faced by the military veterans can only be reached through dialogue and not by violence and coercion.
ISSUED BY THE PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON DEFENCE AND MILITARY VETERANS, MR CYRIL XABA.
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