CArmy “outraged” by recruitment scammers targeting the military

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In the wake of the second known SA National Defence Force (SANDF) recruitment scam of the year, the man in charge of its single largest component – the SA Army – used words and phrases ranging from “outrage”, “deceitful”, “unethical” and “child soldiers” to roundly condemn those falsely marketing military careers at unsuspecting young South Africans.

The internet-based scam initially elicited a warning from the force’s Directorate: Corporate Communication (DCC) saying “unsuspecting youths (sic)” should not engage with online scammers in an advertisement as it “is not a recognised or legitimate SANDF online platform”.

That was followed by a strongly worded statement from DCC extensively quoting CArmy, Lieutenant General Lawrence Mbatha.

He is said to be “outraged at repeated deceitful efforts by faceless criminals to bring the SA Army into disrepute. Recent use of various social media platforms targeting youths as young as 15 is absolutely unethical, incorrect and should be condemned by all law abiding citizens of our country”.

“Neither the SA Army nor the SANDF engages in the employment of child soldiers. The Constitution of the country and relevant legal prescripts governing employment do not allow for recruitment of minors. It is illegal and unethical to suggest the SA Army is calling for minors to apply for employment (sic).

“Scammers resorted to luring desperate youths and their unsuspecting parents by offering stipends, free accommodation and free applications, a deviation from the now well-known modus operandi of asking for an application fee to make their advertisement look and sound legitimate. The SA Army and the SANDF wishes to reiterate categorically there is currently no official marketing and recruitment drives being conducted”.

According to Mbatha, the landward force will co-operate with “the relevant law enforcement agencies to track, trace and bring to book the perpetrators of these atrocious criminal acts”.

The year’s first military recruitment scam asked for volunteers to join the elite Special Forces component of the SANDF.

An indication of the lack of knowledge about military matters on the scammers’ part is when they created their bogus recruitment ad they were – and probably still are – unaware Special Forces recruitment is done within the SANDF. Civilians are not welcome!