The public have until July 16 to comment on the Defence Amendment Bill [B11-2010] tabled in Parliament earlier this month.
The Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans says “interested persons and stakeholders” can submit written comments on the Bill that seeks to ensure that Reserve Force members can be utilised and required to perform service in the Defence Force at all times, including peacetimes, and establish a permanent Defence Force Service Commission – a body that will advise the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans on the improvement of conditions of service of members of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).
Committee chairman Mnyamazeli Booi adds that the public is also invited to submit written comments on the proposed inclusion of an additional clause in the Defence Amendment Bill that will provide for the inclusive definition of “Military Command”. Section 202(1) of the South African Constitution requires the President to appoint the “Military Command of the Defence Force”. The Defence Act (No 42 of 2002), however, does not define the concept “Military Command”; instead, sections 7(1) and 13(1) of the Defence Act only stipulate the appointment of the Secretary of Defence and the Chief of the SANDF by the President.
“An inclusive definition of the Military Command is therefore proposed, to include the appointment of the Chiefs of the Army, Air Force, Navy, Medical Health Services, Defence Intelligence and Joint Operations to this structure,” Booi says.
Comments can be emailed to committee secretary Mandy Balie at [email protected] Balie can also be reached at 021 403 3673.