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Armed Forces Day to be commemorated in style

2017-02-17 15:10

The South African National Defence Force will present the Armed Forces Day on February 21 2017.

There will be several activities leading up to the event over the period 15 to 21 February 2017 in Durban.

Armed Forces Day commemorates the sinking of the SS Mendi during the First World War in 1917.

The Armed Forces Day Celebration this year will be hosted by the defence force at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Tuesday.

This is the arrival of defence force elements in Durban, and the base camp in Durban.

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President Jacob Zuma will officiate the celebrations at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Tuesday, 21 February.

Zuma will take the salute from the South African National Defence Force during the military parade and subsequently bestow military medals to honour some members of the SANDF for their outstanding work and for service to the country.

A wreath in honour of the 616 troops of the South African Native Labour Corps (SANLC) who perished on 21 February 1917 will also be laid.

“Armed Forces Day honours members of the SANDF for their outstanding service and dedication during various military operations in defending the territorial integrity of the Republic and protecting our people as well as their selfless contribution in international peacekeeping missions, mostly on the African continent.

"This year’s Armed Forces Day also marks the centenary commemoration of one of the worst tragedies in the South African history where hundreds of South African troops, including 607 black troops, died during the sinking of the SS Mendi steamship during the First World War on 21 February 1917,” said Zuma.

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March 19 2017