Minister of Transport and protection team survive spiking hijack on the N3: Police launch manhunt

A shocking incident occurred on the N3 highway between Vosloorus and Heidelberg in the early hours of Monday morning when the Minister of Transport, Sindisiwe Chikunga, and her dedicated SAPS (South African Police Service) protection team fell victim to a spiking hijacking. The criminals responsible for the attack punctured the tyres of the Minister’s car with spikes, forcing the vehicle to a halt and enabling them to rob the occupants of their valuables.

The Department of Transport has officially confirmed this unfortunate incident, stating that the matter is currently under investigation by the South African Police Service. As a result, specific details about the incident are currently limited.

However, both Minister Chikunga and her protection team emerged from this harrowing ordeal unharmed and safe, marking a testament to the effectiveness of the SAPS’s VIP protection protocols. The Minister expressed her deep gratitude for the overwhelming support she received from her government colleagues and the people of South Africa. She remains resolute in her commitment to fulfilling her government responsibilities.

Collen Msibi, Head of Communications at the National Department of Transport, commented on the incident, saying: “We are unable to provide further details as the matter is currently being investigated by the South African Police Service.”

In a separate statement issued by the SAPS, Brigadier Athlenda Mathe announced that a comprehensive investigation is underway to apprehend those responsible for the armed robbery. The incident resulted in the theft of personal belongings and two SAPS service pistols.

Members of the SAPS involved in the incident are receiving necessary support and counseling to cope with the traumatic event. The SAPS has launched a manhunt to bring the culprits to justice and recover the stolen items.

Brigadier Mathe emphasized the SAPS’s commitment to executing its mandate of protecting the executive of the country and the community at large, stating: “VIP protection is one of the key priority areas for the SAPS and has been undertaken with excellence over the years. We endeavour to continue to serve and protect while observing all aspects of our VIP protection protocols.”

As the investigation continues, the Minister of Transport has been provided with alternative resources to ensure her safety and continued ability to carry out her government duties. The incident serves as a reminder of the challenges faced by public officials in South Africa and the critical role played by the SAPS in their protection and security.

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