Steenhuisen SANDF deployment

DA leader John Steenhuisen.

Photo by Gallo Images/Ziyaad Douglas)

SAPS and SANDF deployment are ‘nowhere in this crisis’ – Steenhuisen

DA Leader John Steenhuisen says the SANDF deployment should be ramped up. He also says Ramaphosa should go to KZN and see the destruction for himself.

Steenhuisen SANDF deployment

DA leader John Steenhuisen.

Photo by Gallo Images/Ziyaad Douglas)

While looting and violence continue to ravage the country, Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen says the deployment of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) desperately needs to be ramped up. 


Steenhuisen, who spent Tuesday morning in areas north of Durban, said neighbourhoods like Phoenix, Verulam and Cornubia have been turned into a “war zone” by marauding mobs, and there is still no sign of the violence letting up.

“The residents I spoke to are shattered by these events. They are struggling to understand how this was possible in our constitutional democracy, and how the state did not offer them, their loved ones, their property and their businesses any protection at all. They all told me today that they felt abandoned and left to fend for themselves,” he said. 


Steenhuisen said both SAPS and the so-called SANDF deployment are nowhere in this crisis. 

“There has been no re-establishment of law and order at all – we saw buildings still burning and we saw bodies still lying in the streets. The reassurances offered by the ministers of the Security Cluster in their press briefing earlier today could not possibly be more meaningless,” he said. 

While Steenhuisen commended SAPS officers and members of the community for doing their best to hold the front line, he said they would not be able to do it for much longer. 

“A deployment of only 2 500 SANDF personnel, for the entire country, is far from sufficient. If government could deploy many times this number during earlier phases of lockdown to enforce lockdown regulations, then they should certainly be able to match, if not exceed, this number in a crisis such as this,” he said. 


Steenhuisen said the most important step in this response should be for the president, the security cluster ministers, the Police Commissioner and the army generals to go and see for themselves the situation on the ground in KZN. 

“When you see the scale of destruction with your own eyes, and when you hear, first-hand, from terrified residents how they spent the night fearing for their lives and not knowing how they will ever pick up the pieces of their destroyed businesses and all the thousands of jobs that were wiped out, you will surely be jolted out of Sunday night televised platitudes and into strong action,” he added. 

He also said it is imperative that we snuff out the coordination and incitement of these criminal acts at the source. 

“It is no secret that leaders of the pro-Zuma faction, as well as others with aligned interests, have been fanning the flames on social media with impunity. Today the DA will lay criminal charges against three of these high profile leaders, in the former president’s children, Duduzane Zuma and Duduzile Zuma-Sambudla, as well as the leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters, Julius Malema,” he added. 

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