Soldiers ordered back from leave

All members are required to provide support during the week of mourning for Madiba.

Members of the SANDF who are on leave have been ordered to return to their units to assist in support as the nation mourns Madiba. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - All soldiers who are on leave have been ordered to return to their posts by midnight on Saturday, South African National Defence Force (SANDF) chief Solly Zacharia Shoke revealed.

Troops will provide support during the national week of mourning following the passing of Nelson Mandela.

Madiba died at his Houghton home in northern Johannesburg on Thursday evening.

Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane on Saturday said the daily management of the various events ahead of Madiba's funeral will be led by the National Joint Operational Centre (NATJOC) of South Africa's security forces.

This includes the SANDF as well as the South African Police Service (SAPS), metro police, intelligence agencies and representatives of various departments and entities.

According to the SANDF, all staff were ordered to return to their posts in order to provide support.

"This is applicable to all uniformed members of the regular force as well as civilians in service at the Department of Defence who are currently absent with leave."

The order excludes members on special leave based on legal grounds.