Reconciling the South African Military’s Mission With Its Budget

Todd Johnson has written in the Daily Maverick an insightful oped on the mismatch between what the government asks and expects the South African National Defense Forces (SANDF) to do and the amount of money allocated to them. The SANDF budget declined again for this fiscal year and stands at around 1 percent of GDP. (By contrast, the budget for education is just under 5 percent of GDP.) 

The SANDF deploys as part of UN and African Union peacekeeping missions across the continent, most notably in Central African Republic, where, in 2013, three hundred SANDF personnel held off thousands of Seleka rebels in what came to be known as the Battle of Bangui, and Democratic Republic of Congo, where UN peacekeepers have the “unique mandate to conduct preventative combat operations.” The SANDF also…

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