IRONIC- WAS THIS NOT THE SAME IDIOTS THAT SAID COMPULSORY MILITARY TRAINING WAS USELESS- THERE IS NO THREAT? WHAT IS THE PROBLEM NOW? NEW "THREATS" LOOMING IN THE "FAR RIGHT?"
By Political Bureau
Members of the military Reserve Force could face up to a year's imprisonment if they failed to comply with call-ups for national deployment or training in future.
The Department of Defence has proposed an amendment to legislation that would make military duty and training compulsory outside of war.
MPs were briefed by the department yesterday on amendments to the 2003 Defence Act.
The amendments include a bid to beef up the Reserve Force, whose members now aren't obligated to take part in training and peacekeeping deployments in peacetime.
The department assured the National Assembly's Defence Committee that the proposed changes were not the result of any threat to the country, but said it was critical to ensure certainty on how to allocate resources within its shrinking budget.
"It is important in terms of South Africa's peacekeeping duties in Africa and the expanding mandate of the defence force," said the department's legal adviser, Siviwe Ngikela.
He said there was nothing in law that compelled members of the Reserve Force to be called up in peacetime, but the lack of certainty meant that it was "critical that service is not left up to individual whims".
The Defence Review in the 1990s said the SANDF's main policy document envisaged a small permanent force and a much larger reserve force.
The SANDF recently resumed its border protection role after it had been taken over by the police for a few years.
The department said the compulsory call-up would provide reservists with the certainty they needed to tell employers they needed to take time off.
POST SENT BY R.T (EASTERN CAPE)