SA defence forces ‘disappointed’ after soldier arrested for allegedly attacking cops, freeing Zim prisoners

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  • The SANDF says it is disappointed that a soldier has been arrested for allegedly attacking Limpopo police officers.
  • During the attack, six awaiting trial prisoners were freed.
  • The soldier forms part of anti-poaching efforts along the South Africa-Zimbabwe border.

A South African National Defence Force (SANDF) member deployed to safeguard the SA-Zimbabwe border has been identified as one of the two people arrested in Limpopo in connection with an attack on police officers transporting six awaiting trial prisoners.

SANDF member Kedibone Langa was arrested in Limpopo in connection with an attack on police officers who were transporting prisoners.

Kedibone Langa appeared in the Louis Trichardt Magistrate’s Court alongside Thabani Sibanda on charges of aiding and abetting, conspiracy to commit a crime and possession of unlawful firearms and ammunition, said police spokesperson, Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo.

“The suspects were arrested in Musina, and the two motor vehicles they used to commit the crime – a grey Mercedes-Benz and a white Toyota bakkie – were confiscated,” he said.

The two will remain in custody, pending further investigations.

READ | Gunmen attack cops on Limpopo road, free six awaiting trial prisoners in their custody

A group of men opened fire on the police officers transporting the six men on the Vivo road, next to the first Schoemansdal turnoff outside Louis Trichardt, on Monday.

They then freed the six prisoners, who the police described as dangerous.

They are:

  • Forward Shumba, 26
  • Shingirai Nyandome, 32
  • Brilliant Sibanda, 26
  • Erick Sithole, 35
  • Moses Zambara, 32
  • Alex Nkomo, 35

According to the SANDF, Langa was deployed on the SA-Zimbabwe border as part of Operation Corona, which is aimed at combatting poaching.

SANDF spokesperson Siphiwe Dlamini said the SANDF was “disappointed” by the incident.

“Any member of the public, including members of the armed forces, are presumed innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. The SANDF will abide by the outcomes of the law enforcement investigations and court pronouncements,” he said.