Mechanic, chef, seamstress
  • The SANDF has called up a "large number" of reserves to help with its massive deployment in aid of anti-Covid-19 operations.
  • Now it has asked reserve force members with special skills to get in touch.
  • Specifically needed: engineers, mechanics, pilots, chefs and seamstresses.
  • For more stories go to the Business Insider South Africa homepage.

The SA National Defence Force (SANDF) says it has already called up "a large number" of its reserve members across the army, navy, air force, and military health service, while others have been told to prepare to be called up at 25 hours notice.

All other reserve force members have been asked to confirm their availability for deployment in what will be the biggest military operation in South African history, as the entire defence force is put to help combating Covid-19.

The deployment is expected to cost some R5 billion.

The Reserve Force comprises around 10,000 people, and many are expected to help directly with tasks such as supporting the SA Police Service (SAPS).

But the SANDF is also still looking for specialist skills, and asked reserves to get in touch if they fall into one of six categories.

Those are:

  • health care practitioners (especially nurses and doctors)
  • qualified chefs
  • qualified mechanics
  • qualified engineers (technical and mechanical)
  • pilots, or anyone with aviation experience
  • qualified seamstresses

The SANDF has said it expects to be used "in support of other government departments to deal decisively with contingencies that might arise" – mostly to provide backup in engineering, logistics, and healthcare.

But under current guidelines troops will also require cloth masks, and the SANDF may be called on to supply field hospitals and kitchens.

(Compiled by Phillip de Wet)

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