By ZBC Reporter
THE Beitbridge Border Post re-opened to the public this Tuesday after Covid-19 forced Southern Africa’s biggest port of entry to scale down operations eight months ago.
After the first ever shutdown of the busiest port of entry in sub-Sahara Africa, 8 months ago, pedestrians and motorists are now free to travel through the border.
A cocktail of strict measures has been put in place to curb the spread of Covid-19, including the need for travellers to produce Covid-19 free certificates issued within 48 hours.
Beitbridge Border Post Assistant Regional Immigration Officer Nqobile Ncube told ZBC News this Tuesday that engagements with local stakeholders and their counterparts in neighbouring South Africa had seen various strategies being adopted to ensure efficiency.
“We held several meetings in the run-up to the opening of the border among local stakeholders and with South Africa. Ministers of both countries met last week where strategies of reducing queues and increasing temperature screening, hand washing and other measures were emphasised, he said.
Although the first day was characterised by low volumes of traffic, authorities anticipate high volumes in the coming few weeks.
“We expect the volumes of traffic to in fact be extra high, so we will be increasing our personnel and suspending off and leave days,” he added.
The travelling public is also excited about the re-opening of the border.
“We are happy because this means we can now freely travel to Musina instead of border jumping and engaging in other illegal activities,” said one of the locals.
The port of entry, which normally operates 24 hours, will follow the Covid-19 curfew which runs from 10 pm to 6 am.