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ZOUTPANSBERGER

24 Augustus 2012 3

By Andries van Zyl

Well-known police officer found dead at her home Makhado police are at present investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of one of their highly decorated police officers. The body of the 52-year-old Capt Erika Bezuidenhout was found at her flat in Makhado (Louis Trichardt) early on Tues­ day morning, about a week after she had gone on sick leave and five days after her birthday on 16 August. At the time of her death, she was living alone. As she was very well-known in the Soutpansberg area, her death came as a shock to many. Ru­ mours soon surfaced that she had committed suicide. The local po­ lice, however, were quick to say The late Capt Erika that residents should not jump Be­zuidenhout (52). to any conclusions. “We do not

want to pre-empt our investiga­ tion by saying that it was suicide. We can, however, say that we do not suspect any foul play at this stage,” said police spokesperson Capt Maano Sadiki. Capt Bezuidenhout’s career in the police service stretched over a period of 33 years, with most of this time served within the Soutpansberg area. She held several senior positions, includ­ ing that of head of the local Child Protection Unit and as former district commander in Tzaneen. She also served in Polokwane and the Lephalale area. She was a decorated police officer, hav­ ing received the police’s medal

for 10 years’ faithful service, the 75-years commemorative police medal, the 10-year commemora­ tive medal (1995 to 2005) and both her 20- and 30-years loyal service medals. “She was a commissioned of­ ficer who did her job diligently. She was always a down-to-earth kind of person. It is always regret­ table to lose a member, especially someone who led from the front,” said Sadiki. At the time of our going to press, funeral arrangements for Capt Bezuidenhout had yet to be finalized. She is survived by two daughters, Marlene and Mario-Lese.

Deur Linda van der Westhuizen

Duisternis hou Sondag baie langer aan as verwag ‘n Donker Sondag het toe heelwat langer aangehou as wat verwag is. Selfoonboodskappe het rondgegaan om sommige inwoners (wie se selfone nie pap was nie) te waarsku dat Makhado (Louis Trichardt) se krag eers ure later sou aankom as die geadverteerde 18:00. Dit het uiteindelik eers om 22:45 aangekom. Die Makhado Munisipaliteit is geloof deur die Soutpansberg Belastingbeta­ lersvereniging (SBBV) dat hulle deeglik kennis gegee het van die onderbreking. Dié onderbreking is uitgestel na 19 Au­ gustus, nadat dit eers op 5 Augustus sou plaasgevind het. “Ons waardeer dat daar kennis gegee is. Ons verstaan dat noodsaaklike in­ standhoudingswerk gedoen moet word en die SBBV wil hê dat die substasies opgegradeer en verbeter moet word. Om

egter nie by die beplanningstye te hou nie en vyf-en-‘n-half ure oor die tyd te gaan, is onaanvaarbaar. Daar is sakepersone wat skade gely het met die inhoud van yskaste wat nie daardie ekstra ure sonder elektrisiteit kon hanteer nie. By ons hotel het ons Italianers gehad en ons het heeltyd verskoning gemaak en hulle belowe dat hulle om 17:00 warm water sou hê om te stort, wat toe nie gebeur het nie,” sê me. Inga Gilfillan, voorsitter van die SBBV. Waarom het die werk aan die hoof substasie soveel langer gevat? Munisipale woordvoerder mnr. Louis Bobodi het ag­ gressief gereageer toe die vraag gestel is. “Julle wil ons blameer. Moenie vrae vra wat nie binne ons bevoegdheid val nie. Vra vir Eskom,” het Bobodi Maandag gesê. Eskom se woordvoerder in die Lim­

TOBIE

LEON

popostreek, mnr. Thiofhi Ratsitanga, het Dinsdag gesê dat hulle tegnici onverpoosd gewerk het, maar dat hulle onvoorsiene tegniese probleme ondervind het by die Makhado substasie. Hy kon egter nie sê wat die aard van die tegniese probleme was nie. Daar is uit ‘n betroubare bron verneem dat daar wel waarskuwings gegee is dat daar te veel werk vir een dag geskeduleer was. Aangesien heelwat inwoners van watertenks en drukpompe gebruik maak, was baie nie net sonder krag nie, maar ook sonder water. “Dit kan dalk ‘n voorsmakie wees van wat kan gebeur as ons krag oor die lang termyn nie na behore onderhou word nie. Ons water het ingegee as gevolg van swak bestuur. Die groot vraag in gemoedere is wat sal gebeur as die elektrisiteitsvoorsiening ook ingee?” het Gilfillan gesê.

NIEKIE

Sarah Venter of Makhado (Louis Trichardt) graduated with a PhD in Botany from the University of the Witwatersrand on 27 June. She did an interdisciplinary PhD that explored the interaction of the ecological and socio-economic implications of baobab fruit harvesting in northern Venda. Population dynamics, fruit production, phenology and recruitment were investigated, with the resultant data being incorporated into a matrix model. Commercialization of baobab fruit plays a critically important role in supporting the livelihoods of marginalized people. However, unabated environmental degradation and climate change threaten populations. During the course of the PhD, Sarah published three articles in international scientific journals and delivered one symposium paper. Another three manuscripts are awaiting publication. She also received an award for outstanding performance in the 2012 academic year. Photo supplied.

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Zoutpansberger 23 August 2012  

Local newspaper bringing you the news, sport and more from Louis Trichardt and surrounding areas in Limpopo province, South Africa.

Zoutpansberger 23 August 2012  

Local newspaper bringing you the news, sport and more from Louis Trichardt and surrounding areas in Limpopo province, South Africa.

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