MK vets threaten 'war' over broken promises

07 April 2016 - 02:49 By Sipho Masombuka

Veterans of the country's liberation armies and soldiers of the apartheid-era SA Defence Force have issued a chilling warning that they will take up arms against the government over benefits that have not materialised.The veterans fired the warning shot yesterday during a march to the headquarters of the Department of Military Veterans in Pretoria to highlight their plight.About 2000 veterans marched from the Pretoria train station to SA National Defence Force headquarters in Hatfield yesterday.Manase Sefatle, commander of the Johannesburg region of the MK Military Veterans Association, said there were inconsistencies in the allocation of housing and problems with the payment of bursaries and medical benefits to veterans.He gave Minister of Defence Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula 14 days to sort out their grievances or "face war".(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); = id; js.src = "//; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));"How long shall we suffer for the bad, not for the good?" Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association marched in Pretoria claiming they had not received benefits they were promised.Posted by Times LIVE on Wednesday, April 6, 2016"We are coming here for the last time peacefully. Next time it will be war. War of a trained soldier is more dangerous than your pens. We shall take up arms and topple you. This is the last warning," he said.Sefatle said military veterans had been waiting for the roll-out of military pensions and housing and medical benefits since 2011 and all they got were promises.In their memorandum, the veterans demanded a report on how many houses had been allocated to former soldiers so far.They also demanded free access to public transport, immediate payment of military pensions and payment of medical bills within 30 days of the memorandum.Department spokesman Mbulelo Musi said the military veterans' threat of violence was unfortunate."I do not think the veterans would actually carry it out," Musi said.

This article is reserved for Sunday Times subscribers.

A subscription gives you full digital access to all Sunday Times content.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Registered on the BusinessLIVE, Business Day or Financial Mail websites? Sign in with the same details.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00.