A member of the SANDF deployed in Mozambique’s volatile Cabo Delgado Province has been killed by insurgents.
The soldier was part of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) mission in Mozambique (SAMIM) under Operation Vikela.
SANDF spokesperson Brigadier-General Andries Mahapa said the SADC soldiers came under attack from the insurgents during an ambush around an area east of Chai village on Monday.
“The members managed to fight through the ambush, but while at the rendezvous awaiting the chopper they got attacked by the insurgents again. During this incident, an SANDF member was shot and declared dead on the scene,” said Mahapa.
The body of the SANDF member was flown back to the SAMIM Chai tactical base.
Mahapa said further investigation was being conducted to determine the extent of injuries to personnel and the loss of equipment during the incident.
“The Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Ms Thandi Modise, the Deputy Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Mr Thabang Makwetla, the Secretary for Defence, Ambassador Sonto Kudjoe, and the Chief of the SANDF, General Rudzani Maphwanya, extend their heartfelt condolences to the family, colleagues and friends of the deceased,” said Mahapa. “May the departed soul rest in peace.”
Earlier this month, International Relations and Co-operation Minister Naledi Pandor said South Africa continues to play an active role in the SADC region.
She was briefing media to provide an overview of work done in implementing South Africa’s foreign policy in 2021.
Pandor highlighted that the situation in Mozambique was of particular concern. Following extensive discussions, the SADC had deployed the Regional Co-ordination Mechanism on the operations of SADC Mission in Mozambique.
Pandor said that the SADC region remains unwavering in its commitment to continue supporting Mozambique in achieving peace and security in some parts of central and northern Cabo Delgado Province.
In August, South Africa took over the role of chair of the SADC Organ for Politics, Defence and Security.