South African National Defence Force (SANDF) soldiers on Operation Corona border protection duty have added the recovery of a stolen vehicle and 200 kg of dagga to their success tally.
Lieutenant Argent Divhambele reports on behalf of the SANDF that members of 9 South African Infantry Battalion, Bravo Company, were deployed at Macadamia when they recovered another stolen vehicle following information shared by Tonga SA Police Service.
The soldiers were informed the vehicle, a 2022 Toyota Hilux, was spotted at Kwamhlushwa village, some 30 km from the Mozambique border. On their arrival at the village, the vehicle smugglers were seen already moving towards the border. The vehicle was then followed and when the smugglers noticed that they were about to be caught, they stopped the vehicle and fled into the bushes. The vehicle was recovered and handed over to Tonga SA Police Service.
After handing over the vehicle, the SANDF team continued with stop and search operations on the N4 road towards Malelane, together with Komatipoort SA Police Service officials. During these operations a convoy of three vehicles approached but after the police signalled the drivers to stop, they instead drove away at high speed.
The police and soldiers gave chase, but only one vehicle was stopped after what Divhambele described as a long chase. In the vehicle, two suspects (a male and a female) and 13 bales of dagga with a weight of 202 kg were found. The suspects and the dagga were handed over to Komatipoort SA Police Service for administration and further investigation.
The Officer Commanding 9 South African Infantry Battalion, Lieutenant Colonel M E Ndlangamandla, congratulated the members that were involved in both operations for being vigilant and being able to stop the illegal activities at the Mpumalanga borderline.