Govt To Engage South Africa On Illegal Border Crossing
Chairperson of the Ad-Hoc Inter Ministerial Task Force and Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri- Kashiri has revealed that Zimbabwe will engage the South African government to increase patrols along border lines to curb illegal crossing, believed to be the major cause of a recent upsurge in Covid-19 cases in the country.
The recent upsurge of Covid-19 cases in the country has seen Matebeleland provinces recording high numbers due to its proximity to Beit Bridge border post.
Speaking during a post Cabinet press briefing in Harare yesterday, Muchinguri-Kashiri said the increase in Covid-19 cases is a result of returning citizens using illegal entry points.
“Matebeleland and Bulawayo by their proximity to South Africa are a cause of concern and I want to say a team of officers in the security sector are going to be meeting their South African counterparts to make sure that those using illegal crossing points we make sure that we increase our patrols in the area because it’s one of the reasons why we are receiving this increase.
“We are receiving school children that are coming back but not using border posts which requires that every returning person should have a clear 48 hour certificate from a reputable laboratory so we are really taking a lot of measures in communities, traditional leaders and the Ministry of Information is increasing awareness programs,” said Muchinguri-Kashiri.
Meanwhile, John Tallach Secondary School in Matabeleland North has been closed after 100 pupils and an undisclosed number of teachers tested positive to Covid-19, with the school now a quarantine centre with all contacts being traced.
Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri said Government is monitoring the situation and we will keep members of the public informed.
The country has to date recorded 8 897 Covid-19 cases with 257 deaths and 8756 recoveries.
The national recovery rate is 92 percent. Seven thousand two hundred and ninety-six (7 296) of the COVID-19-positive cases are local transmissions.