9-year-old boy drowns
Madikwe – Enjoying what was left of their school holiday, a bunch of kids from Madikwe (about 90km from Rustenburg) went for a swim in a stream flowing into the Tholwane River on Friday 7 January.
While most of the kids just played on the riverbank, a 9-year-old boy who played in the water, was swept downstream by the strong current, due to recent rains. His friends immediately sounded the alarm. The Madikwe police, Hartbeespoort Dam’s National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI), and the Uitkyk village Strategic Rescue Unit (SRU) attended the scene.
They braved the Tholwane River but the search had to be called off, only to resume the following morning as it was getting too dark to continue.
The search was extended downstream, where the Tholwane River flows into the Madikwe Dam.
The search efforts were hampered by the swollen river and the remote and barely accessible terrain. Community members also joined the search operation.
At approximately 17h30, members of the Police Air Wing spotted the boy on the riverbank, about 8 kilometres downstream from where the children were swimming. Emergency personnel were sent in, who found that the child died.
“A judicial inquest into the cause of death is underway,” said Rustenburg Police captain Elsabé Augoustides.
The body of the boy was sent to the Government Health Forensic Pathology Services.
We extend our sincerest condolences to the child’s family and friends.
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