Heavy and persistent rain over much of South Africa isolated some communities, necessitating outside assistance with food and other essentials, with the SA Air Force (SAAF) in the vanguard of at least one mercy mission.
At the weekend a CASA 212 transport operated by AFB Waterkloof-based 44 Squadron joined an Oryx medium transport helicopter from 17 Squadron (AFB Swartkop) delivering eight tons of food to Taolo Gaetsewe District Municipality in the Northern Cape. The local authority borders Botswana in the west and comprises the three local municipalities Gamagara, Ga-Segonyana and Joe Morolong as well as 186 towns and settlements, with the majority (80%) villages.
The sortie was flown in support of the Department of Social Development and the SA Police Service, according to the SA National Defence Force’s (SANDF’s) Major Mpho Mathebula.
Aircrew for the twin-engined light transport was Lieutenant Colonel Sammy Tshepo Mabidikama (commander), Captain Bongani Ndimande (co-pilot) and Sergeant Lucas Moalusi (loadmaster).
Oryx aircrew was Lieutenant Colonel Maluleke (commander), Major Nicolene Greeff (co-Pilot) and Flight Sergeant Moeketsi Ntuli (flight engineer).