Mudimu taking legal advice on SASFU allegations

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Vice Admiral Johannes Refiloe Mudimu is taking legal advice on allegations by the South African Security Forces Union (SASFU) that he had insulted President Jacob Zuma.

 

Mudimu says he rejects “with the strongest contempt, any attempt to imply that I, as the Chief of the South African Navy, and a South African whose life has been dedicated to upholding the values of our Constitution, have insulted or compromised the Commander-in-Chief of the South African National Defence Force, and President of the country, His Excellency Jacob Zuma, in any way whatsoever.”

The allegations were made by SASFU president Bhekinkosi Mvovo, a lieutenant commander in the Navy.  

Mudimu says he has dedicated his life to serving the country. “I have, for much of my life, been a loyal member of the African National Congress and the People`s Army, Umkhonto we Sizwe…

“With the attainment of our freedom in 1994, I pledged my loyalty to the Government of the day – a pledge that was founded, once again, in my belief in a democratic South Africa – a democracy which I, and many men and women far greater than me, had fought to obtain.

“In making this pledge of allegiance, I affirmed the centrality of the Deed of Commission and the Code of Conduct for Members of the South African National Defence Force in my life; and as a patriot of this Country, I believe that I have lived in accordance with these principles and values to the very best of my ability.”

“I have consulted with my legal advisors to advice me on what legal recourse to take,” Mudimu says.

Mvovo on Sunday called for Mudimu`s resignation, saying the admiral had told senior naval staff he would not support a president he felt was “uneducated”.

“Members of the SA Navy (sic) have lost confidence in the top leadership of the service,” the Cape Times quoted Mvovo saying, adding he was urging Zuma to take “decisive action” on the issue.

The union leader also alleged that Mudimu had used a Navy vehicle and driver to attend recent political rallies of the Congress of the People (COPE), a break-away faction of the ruling African National Congress headed by former defence minister Mosiuoa Lekota.

Democratic Alliance shadow defence minister David Maynier, meanwhile says Mvovo`s demand “is way out of line”.

“This is very dangerous ground indeed… It is imperative in our constitutional democracy that the defence force and the defence unions are not drawn into what could be perceived as advancing the interests of a political party – or a faction of a political party – in South Africa.”