Since you commenced your term of office in 2009, the Military Veterans’ Act has been enacted to provide benefits for all persons who received military training and who were thus capacitated to carry arms, according to the rank at which they operated.
These provisions provide solely for those who received military training. They ignore the reality that within the country thousands of active citizens served as defenders of their communities in Self – Defence Units and in other community-based operations to protect their communities from the daily violence perpetrated by the occupying SADF soldiers and members of the Security Police.
To the extent that these provisions privilege military veterans over struggle veterans, they are discriminatory and they create deep divisions within communities where people came together in solidarity to overthrow the military might of the apartheid regime.
We reject these artificial divisions. We wish to put on the record the reality that all the military veterans’ associations have themselves joined forces with Khulumani in supporting the proposals submitted by Khulumani for the fair and just compensation and reparation of all who were active defenders of communities throughout the struggle and who consequently suffered physically, emotionally and financially from their sacrifices – sacrifices that need to be acknowledged and recognised accompanied by measures to repair of the harm sustained by individuals.