UPDATE: Modise, Gungubele rescued after being held hostage by military veterans

Scores of police were deployed to St George’s hotel outside Pretoria as a meeting between the combatants and the government ministers deteriorated into a shouting match.

Defence Minister Thandi Modise, Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele and Deputy Minister of Defence Thabang Makwetla  were held hostage by former liberation combatants at St George’s hotel outside Pretoria on 14 October 2021. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Defence Minister Thandi Modise, Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele and Deputy Minister of Defence Thabang Makwetla have been rescued after they were held hostage for over two hours by former liberation combatants.

Scores of police were deployed to St George’s hotel outside Pretoria as a meeting between the veterans and the government ministers deteriorated into a shouting match on Thursday night.

“They were blocking the doors and chanting inside and outside and they wouldn’t let us leave,” one source told Eyewitness News

The government representatives were held hostage from 7 pm and released after 10 pm.

Eyewitness News has been told that some people have been injured. However, we are yet to confirm the numbers.

Reporters have seen at least two ambulances go into the hotel.

The ex-combatants are said to have demanded to see President Cyril Ramaphosa and his Deputy David Mabuza.

They also want government to give them R4 million each for their role in liberating South Africa.

The group of about 30 had earlier this week staged a sit in at Luthuli House and were on Thursday meeting with the ministers.

They group from Umkhonto weSizwe, APLA and AZANLA - represented by the Liberation Struggle War Veterans (LSWV) - were meeting with the Presidential Task Team (PTT) on Military Veterans chaired by the Deputy President of the Republic.

However, sources say Mabuza was not at the venue when the hostage situation unfolded.

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