Investigation under way into Alexandra man's death after alleged assault by soldiers
The SA National Defence Union (Sandu) has called for a military inquiry into the death of a man from Alexandra, north of Johannesburg, allegedly after being beaten by defence force (SANDF) members.
Police spokesperson Brig Mathapelo Peters said the man, believed to be in his 40s, was allegedly assaulted by soldiers on Good Friday.
Peters said a murder case was opened at the Alexandra police station where police are awaiting the postmortem results.
Spokesperson for the defence force Col Louis Kirstein said the SANDF would co-operate with the police investigation.
“The SANDF reiterates that its members are expected to act within the confines of the law during this difficult period as they enforce the lockdown regulations and help save lives in support of the police.
“Any action outside the law will not be condoned,” Kirstein said.
Sandu said an urgent board of inquiry must be instituted.
“A board of investigation will have the right to access all witnesses and evidence. The public must understand the SANDF will not allow its soldiers to act impervious of the law and without consequence. Both the constitution and the military justice system simply do no allow it.
“It will be easy to identify the soldiers allegedly involved as deployment patrols are subject to designated 'sticks' or platoons within very specific patrol area parameters.
“The fact that an incident occurred for which back-up was called and effected would have to be reported in the section and/or platoon commander’s patrol report for a specific day. The report would be filed with the deployment headquarters,” Sandu spokesperson Pikkie Greeff said.
Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi offered to help the family at the weekend should they require his aid, saying he could "refer the incident to an attorney for action against the state for the wrongful death".