Zimbabwe has expressed unconcern over South Africa’s plans to erect a fence along the two countries’ borders as part of Tshwane’s measures to stem irregular migration and contain the spread of the new coronavirus (COVID-19).
Government spokesperson Ndavaningi Nick Mangwana told Al Jazeera on Friday that it is South Africa’s sovereign right to build the fence. He said:
Some people build durawalls around their houses, fields or properties and some put up fences. This is a choice people make on how to show their boundaries.
The type of demarcation they choose is their sovereign right. The same applies to international boundaries.
South Africa’s public works minister, Patricia de Lille, on Thursday announced plans to erect the 40km fence on both sides of the Beitbridge Land Port of Entry to ensure that no undocumented or infected persons cross into the country. She added:
At the border post now, you’ve got health inspectors and you’ve got environmental professionals and they are doing the testing and screening at the border. But if somebody just walks over the border, there are no such facilities.
Zimbabwe has so far recorded three cases of COVID-19, with Health Ministry officials confirming the first case on Friday while the latest two cases were announced by a Harare City official on Saturday.