SA’s curfew forces Beitbridge border post to close at 10 pm daily. The border post is Africa’s busiest port of entry with more than 25,000 people crossing daily. It is not clear when this curfew will be lifted as Zimbabwe is witnessing a resurgence in coronavirus infections.
The Zimbabwean side of the Beitbridge border post, which was fully reopened on Monday, will have to close between 10 pm and 6 am as the country is still under a Covid-19-related curfew.
South Africa’s Police Minister Bheki Cele has called on law enforcement officials at various ports of entry in South Africa to intensify border control. The minister on Thursday monitored adherence to COVID-19 regulations at the Beitbridge border post at Musina in Limpopo.
Launching the border post safety campaign, Cele said with thousands of people expected to move between the border during the December period, it is important for officers to uphold the law and COVID-19 regulations.
South Africa’s president Cyril Ramaphosa announced new lockdown measures at both national, and district level for South Africa.
In a national address on Monday evening (14 December), Ramaphosa introduced a national curfew from 22h00 – 04h00 except for essential workers and emergencies which is being used by the South African to shut down the Beitbridge border.
The activity has heightened at Beitbridge Border Post as more Zimbabweans based in South Africa start trickling in for the festive holidays under strict Covid-19 management protocols.
All travellers are being screened before entering the country and are mandated to produce a Covid-19 clearance certificate with a validity not exceeding two days.
Those travelling to South Africa should produce the same certificates but with a validity of three days. By end of day yesterday, the border was full of light vehicles, commercial trucks and pedestrians who are allowed to access the border underthe current travel regulations.
Cabinet announced recently that public transport will be re-introduced in the first quarter of next year. Security has been beefed with security guards from the Department of Immigration, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra), the police and other security agencies.
Those without valid travel documents are screened at all entry and exit points. According to one border official, traffic started increasing from Friday when schools closed and most companies affected the annual shutdown.
Source – Bulawayo24