Part-time soldiers recover earthmover in Limpopo

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Johannesburg Reserve Force regiment Bambatha Rifles notched a notable first during its current Operation Corona border protection deployment recovering a single earthmoving machine worth over R1 million.

Joint Tactical Headquarters Limpopo’s Captain Moses Semono reports a stolen tractor/loader/backhoe (TLB) was found “in a house” in Malale village by soldiers on foot patrol in the Madimbo area of Limpopo. The multi-purpose machine, reported stolen in Makhado, was spotted by alert infantry soldiers along with two suspects who attempted to escape on foot. This, Semono wrote, did not work as soldiers apprehended them.

The TLB recovery and suspects’ apprehension was the first operational success for the Rifles since moving into the northern Limpopo adjacent to the Zimbabwe border. The success, again according to Semono, put an almost permanent smile on the face of Officer Commanding, Lieutenant Colonel Lawrence Ramotsamai.

The suspects and TLB were taken to Tshamutumbu Police Station and from there to SA Police Service (SAPS) in Musina.

The success shows SA Army regular and reserve units regular patrols, often 24/7, have an effect on illegals and smugglers wanting to enter South Africa and assist in recovering stolen goods – mostly vehicles – meant for illegal export.