Scores of Zimbabwean border jumpers are stranded at Ha-Tshirundu village in Malala Drift along the Beitbridge border fence as the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has been guarding the border to prevent illegal crossings.
South Africa recently deployed a helicopter to fly over the Limpopo River to keep an eye on border jumpers.
The Zimbabwean nationals now grounded at Ha-Tshirundu had crossed the Beitbridge border into South Africa illegaly after Zimbabwe enforced a hard lockdown to contain new coronavirus infections threatening to spiral out of control.
Albert Bvute (66), who jumped the border into South Africa over a week ago destined for Tzaneen where his son works, has been stranded at the village since then.
Bvute said that he walked through the bushes and the Limpopo River to seek medical attention in South Africa and is now unable to go back home, due to the lockdown.
Another Zimbabwean, a catle header, has also been stranded in Ha-Tshirundu for the past three days.
He told SABC News that he crossed the border into South Africa to fetch his father’s cattle, which often cross the border to graze along the Malala Drift’s grazing field.
He expressed hope that when water levels in the Limpopo River subside and his cattle are able to cross, the South African soldiers will let him pass and go home. He said:
I came here to fetch cattle but then the river filled up and the cattle can’t pass; I’m waiting for the water to pass. My home is about 6 kilometres from here. When the water level goes down, I will take my cattle and heard home; I will ask the soldiers.