On 4 October 1975 a reconnaissance plane of the MPLA reconnoitred the road between Norton de Matos and Luimbale. According to the UNITA soldiers this was a daily occurrence and major Holtzhausen was not unduly worried that his force had been detected where it was hidden in the bush.
At Massano de Amorim, 38 kilometres east of Norton de Matos, the local UNITA infantry under Major Lumumba, joined the combat group. Major Holtzhausen explained normal deployment movements and made sure that all UNITA commanders knew what he expected of them. Major Lumumba’s men looked rather haggard after having spent months in the field.
The advance was led by the Land Cruiser with the anti-aircraft gun, followed by the armoured cars. The command vehicle and the three missile vehicles followed and the Land Rover with the Browning machineguns brought up the rear. Dr. Savimbi did not accompany them any further. Gradually more UNITA infantry appeared out of the bush next to the road and joined the column.
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