The civil rights organisation AfriForum on 6 January 2023 strongly criticised the proposed amendments to the Military Veterans Pension Benefits Regulations 2022 as published for public comment by the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans.
The organisation is strongly opposed to the Draft Pension Regulations because it only affords pension benefits to certain listed “non-statutory force members” while excluding other non-statutory and all statutory force members.
This makes the regulations discriminatory and unconstitutional by only affording pension benefits to three selected “non-statutory forces” Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK), Azanian People’s Liberation Army (APLA), and Azanian National Liberation Army (ANLA).
Effectively, the Draft Pension Regulations exclude pension benefits from all other statutory and non-statutory force members, such as members of the South African National Defence Force between 1957 and 1994, members of the South African Cape Corps, and members of the defence forces of the former TBVC states.
“It is clear that this is just another selfish move by the ANC government to try and garner support among organisations such as Umkhonto we Sizwe in the run-up to the coming elections. AfriForum will not allow the government to trample on those veterans who selflessly served their country with pride,” says Jacques Broodryk, AfriForum’s spokesperson for Community Safety.
“It is also disturbing that the Minister only afforded a period of 30 days for written comment, even though the Draft Pension Regulations were published at the eleventh hour of 2022, when most South Africans are on annual leave for the December festive season.”
Read the original article in Afrikaans on AfriForum