A direct result of the cooperation between Portugal and the Republic of South Africa was the founding of 1 Air Component. The purpose of the air component was to provide more mobility to the forces responsible for combating terrorism. An administrative headquarters was established at Rundu on the Angolan border, with a helicopter unit at Katima Mulilo in the Caprivi-strip as well as a railway ending at Grootfontein. Cmdt. L.P.T. (Larry) Eagar was appointed as the first commanding officer of the component on 6 May 1968, which comprised of approximately 60 men. At Rundu, Air Force draftees were initially used to guard the airfield, but they were soon replaced by a platoon from 2 South African Infantry Battalion. And at Grootfontein, a maintenance unit was established which was also responsible for the maintenance of the road link between Grootfontein and Rundu.
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