Marievale moving to become an equestrian base


Moves are underway to provide proper equestrian facilities at the much-maligned Marievale SA Army base.

The SA National Defence Force (SANDF) said Major General Patrick Dube, Infantry Formation GOC (General Officer Commanding), visited the base on Gauteng’s East Rand with a delegation to, among others, inspect stables prepared for SAASIC (SA Army Specialised Infantry Capability) horses.

“This project is part of systematic improvement of the SAASIC equestrian wing training facility, according to specifications of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA),” the national defence force said.

The Marievale base has long been a thorn in the side of SA Army management and seen legal action brought on a number of occasions by Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR). The legal actions have centred on supposedly ill-treatment meted out to squatters apparently illegally occupying military accommodation as well as their further ill-treatment when they took up residence in the Happy Valley informal settlement adjacent to the base.

While at the base, Dube updated Army Support Base (ASB) Johannesburg, Bambatha Regiment and 21 SA Infantry Battalion personnel on staffing, placement and course backlog issues as well as providing insight into the “modern brigade”.

This, according to Dube, has been established to provide course support for learning programmes including those for integrated sub-unit commanders, and the Junior Command and Staff Duties and Operational Duties courses by year-end.