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Why DA feels SANDF should assist in protection of supply chains

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John Steenhuisen has called for the safe-guarding and protection of supply chains in food, medication and fuel in KZN, and feels that the SANDF should provide security.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) leader, John Steenhuisen called for the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) deployment to be used to protect food, medical and fuel security in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN). In a statement on Thursday, 15 July 2021, he stressed the need for the SANDF to protect supply chains. He further noted that the next big crisis would be the threat to food security in KZN, along with the supply of medication and fuel. The DA leader also noted that with warehouse and distribution centres destroyed throughout the province, and trucks still being looted and burnt on major arterial roads, supplies cannot reach shops from elsewhere.

Steenhuisen stated that there is a need for a large part of military deployment to be used to open up and guard the N2 and N3, and provide security for shops as they re-stock. The DA also stated that the SANDF has the vehicles, equipment and personnel to be able to carry out this crucial task, while assisting the South African Police Service (SAPS) and law enforcement. The party further stated that it believes that the need for the protection of food security and the supply chains needs be a top priority in the province.

The DA also stated how important it is for the province’s medical supply chains to be restored and protected, as pharmacies, warehouses and medical practices have also been ransacked. Steenhuisen believes that a shortage of chronic medication, medical consumables and oxygen supplies will have devastating effects, and that the same military protection needs to be applied to the supply of COVID-19 vaccines to various vaccination sites for the province’s vaccination programme to be restored as soon as possible. The third supply chain Steenhuisen believes needs to be protected is that of petrol and diesel, as fuel stocks are already said to be running dangerously low in the province.

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Mahlohonolo Lakaje
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