Zimbabwean soldiers and police officers are reportedly accepting bribes to assist illegal migrants to cross into South Africa through the two countries’ porous border.
South Africa’s Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi expressed concern about “corruption on the Zimbabwe side of the Beitbridge Border Post” regarding the issuing of COVID-19 certificates.
Motsoaledi was in Limpopo observing operations at the Beitbridge Border Post where he was also told that more than 500 foreign nationals are being arrested daily after crossing into South Africa illegally. Said Motsoaledi:
We are worried. We have said this before that we heard rumours that there are people who will come with fraudulent certificates and we have found them and we are returning them.
We are arresting people with no documents; either COVID-19 or passport.
Even yesterday, they arrested 500; that’s happening every day from what I told you.
They showed me a video where Zimbabwean soldiers and police were helping people to come I asked ‘what’s that?
Motsoaledi said from Monday (tomorrow), operations will be stepped up along the border with Zimbabwe to stem illegal crossings into South Africa.
He further said the army will patrol the rivers and a helicopter and drones will be used to monitor the border and police boats will be put on the Limpopo River.
Tomorrow the army is getting a helicopter, SARS has provided rubber dinghies for them which are moving in the water up and down and chasing those who are trying to cross with dinghies.
We have heard that there is a business here selling rubber dinghies which are used illegally for R3000. I’m going to visit that business when I leave here if it is open today but they told me about it.
The border management authority is being enacted the acting commissioner has just started work on new year’s day.
Tomorrow the army gets their helicopter and we will also be using drones around the border.