Frustrated military veterans want meeting with ANC leadership to resolve issues

Members of the Liberation Struggle War Veterans said that they were desperate to find solutions for protracted issues, which former combatants had been dealing with over the years.

FILE: Members of the Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association march to Luthuli House. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG - While frustrated military veterans, under the banner of Liberation Struggle War Veterans, are set to meet with African National Congress (ANC) deputy president David Mabuza on Thursday, they don’t believe that he will provide solutions to their problems.

The former soldiers were evacuated from the ANC’s headquarters on Tuesday after camping there while demanding a meeting with the ANC’s top officials.

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They said that this demonstration was following up on a march to the president’s offices last year. President Ramaphosa appointed Mabuza as the head of a task team to address the veterans’ affairs.

The veterans represent the ANC’s own armed wing Umkhonto We Sizwe, Apla from the PAC and Azania’s Azanla Armies. Issues raised include medical aid, unemployment and housing.

Members of the Liberation Struggle War Veterans said that they were desperate to find solutions for protracted issues, which former combatants had been dealing with over the years. While some wanted employment, others wanted houses and for the state to sort out their medical bills. But a year after marching to President Cyril Ramaphosa and meeting with Mabuza, much was yet to be achieved.

Thandoxulo Dyodyo, one of those who had camped at Luthuli House, said that they did not want to just see Mabuza but to see all leaders in one meeting.

“No one cares. If you go to the Department of Defence, they will tell you bluntly that they are not the president, go and address this with the president,” he said.

Members of the ANC’s MKMVA itself are also awaiting a joint conference but have been told to wait as a preparatory committee was working on it.

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