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Thohoyandou - Police in Thohoyandou have launched a massive manhunt for armed suspects who hijacked an on-duty traffic police officer and shot and seriously wounded him on Sunday morning, Limpopo police said.

The 35-year-old traffic police officer was apparently carrying out official duties alone at about 9am along the Makonde and Luvhimbi public road near Thohoyandou, Lt-Col Moatshe Ngoepe said.

He stopped a metallic gold Toyota Corolla with the registration number CMJ 570 L. The occupants pointed firearms at him, forcing him into their vehicle, and drove off towards Thathe plantations.

"On arrival at these plantations they stripped him off his uniform, took his official firearm, all his belongings, and they shot him before they fled, leaving him there. The matter was reported to the police who reacted swiftly and subsequently the state motor vehicle which was being used by the victim was found abandoned at Makonde village," Ngoepe said.

The officer sustained serious gunshot wounds and had been admitted to hospital for medical treatment. Anyone with information which could lead to the arrest of the suspects should please contact Brigadier James Espach at 082-576-0743, or the Crime Stop number 08600-10111, or the crime line sms 32211, or the nearest police station.

African News Agency/ANA