South African National Defence Force (SANDF) warns that any civilian in South Africa that is caught wearing military uniforms would be arrested and jailed for up to five years.
Giving the announcement on Tuesday, the defence force expressed concern over the increasing illegal procession of military clothing and other military items by the South African public.
Hence, in a bid to cut down the abuse of SANDF uniform and other items, the defence force said all member of the public holding any of its properties should return them to nearest Defence force base or unit or stand the risk of being arrested and prosecuted.
“The SANDF is highly concerned by a growing trend amongst members of the public who‚ knowingly or unknowingly‚ wear and or are in possession of either complete or various items of the SANDF combat dress (camouflage) illegally.
“Members of the public are advised that the SANDF camouflage has been registered (patent) for use solely by authorised members of the SANDF and or by those members identified by the chief of the defence force and appointed as honorary members of the various SANDF units and or bases‚” it said in a statement.
According to Timeslive, The South African National Defence Force further noted that should any member of the SANDF retire‚ pass away or resign from active duty‚ they or their family refrain from wearing‚ displaying or selling any items of their uniform.
This is in line with the Defence Act 42 of 2002‚ Section 104 (5) and (6) which stipulates that: “Any person who‚ without authority‚ possesses or wears prescribed uniforms distinctive marks or crests‚ or performs any prohibited act while wearing such uniform or with such uniform‚ distinctive marks or crests‚ is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years.”
It, therefore, reminded the public that the ‘Defence Act 42 of 2002) is still in force and any person who contravenes its provision commits an offence and is liable to prosecution when arrested.