SANDF denies excessive punishment

SANDF says it's unaware recruits were punished with physical training despite claims they were.

A soldier from the Oudtshoorn Army Base, who was allegedly assaulted for going AWOL. Picture: Sandu.

CAPE TOWN - The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) said on Tuesday it was not aware five recruits from the Oudtshoorn Army Base, who were put through a strenuous training session, needed medical help.

Last Thursday, the five SANDF members dressed in full uniform went AWOL and were then punished with physical training.

The South African National Defence Union (SANDU) claims it was 11 recruits and not five that were involved and said many had to receive medical assistance.

But the SANDF's Xolani Mbanga rubbished these claims.

"I don't know anything about it. All I know is that all physical training conducted within the SANDF will be and is conducted in the presence of, or with the knowledge of a medical professional."

He said Oudtshoorn army base management were allowed to subject recruits who have broken the rules to a punitive physical training exercise.

On Tuesday, the SANDF said a board of inquiry was currently looking into the matter.