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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist

SA Air Force aircraft damaged after crash landing at Lohatla

It is unclear what caused the crash.

A South African Air Force (SAAF) aircraft, Casa-212, from 44 Squadron at Waterkloof Air Force Base crash landed at (Dippies Airfield) Combat Training Centre Lohatla in Northern Cape.

The incident happened while the aircraft was taking part in Exercise Vuk’uhlome 2023 on Wednesday afternoon.

It is unclear what caused the crash.


South African National Defence Forces (SANDF) spokesperson Brigadier-General Andries Mokoena Mahapa said the aircraft flew members of the media from Air Force Base Waterkloof to Dippies Airfield at Lohatla before dropping paratroopers as part of the Vuk’uhlome Distinguished Visitors Day demonstration.

“The crash happened as it was landing following one of the manoeuvres of dropping paratroopers.

“The members of the South African Medical Health Service were swiftly on sight to provide necessary medical support and all members on board the aircraft were confirmed safe, as there were no injuries sustained,” said Mahapa.

ALSO READ: One killed, another injured after light aircraft crashes in Bloemfontein

He said a board of inquiry will be convened to determine the cause of the crash as well as the damage to the aircraft.


The SAAF’s 44 Squadron only had one of three C212s serviceable prior to the accident. In September, Armscor reported that a maintenance contract with Airbus was in progress and spares and repairs provided to the SAAF to make the fleet serviceable, according to Defence Web.

The SAAF inherited four C212s in 1994 from the air wings of the former Bophuthatswana, Transkei and Venda states.

In February, United Nations secretary-general António Guterres “strongly condemned” the attack on a SANDF aircraft in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The condemnation came after an Oryx helicopter was shot down in the North Kivu province; in which a surviving crew member wounded by gun fire safely landed the chopper at Goma Airport.

South Africa deployed nearly 1 500 troops in DRC as part of a UN peace keeping mission.

ALSO READ: Attack on SANDF helicopter ‘a war crime under international law

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