South Africa Blames Zimbabwe for Beitbridge Border Post Chaos

South Africa Blames Zimbabwe For Beitbridge Border Post Chaos(News Central TV)

The South African government has blamed Zimbabwe for the logistical nightmare and gridlock experienced by truck drivers at the Beitbridge Border Post lately.

Toll company Zimborders which was awarded a contract by the Zimbabwean government to upgrade the border post, commenced collecting toll fees causing truck drivers to spend weeks at the border post.

South Africa’s Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said the Zimbabwean government is not playing ball.

He said Zimbabwe’s decision to “charge people $200 and demanding the money in cash” has complicated matters, adding:
And when you are doing renovations you make no space for parking, when you know that Beitbridge is not only a passage to Zimbabwe, it’s a passage to the whole continent.

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We have been discussing the issue of automation forever. The newly renovated buildings have opened 75% of the place, which is new. But that newly renovated place is not automated.

So it doesn’t matter how many trucks you process in SA, they can only take a particular number. At some stage, they could only take 10 trucks per hour. That is quite terrible for us.

We have a team based there permanently, which is meeting [Zimbabwean] officials every single day. And every time they meet, they say, ‘We are waiting for an answer from Harare’.

Meanwhile, Road Freight Association CEO Gavin Kelly said on Wednesday that truck queues on the Zimbabwean side have been dealt with. He said:

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The situation already changed in the past 24 hours. The queues from Zimbabwe are gone. We are trying to eradicate the SA-side queue today [Wednesday].

Zimborders expects to collect at least $1bn (R14.43bn) over 17 years from toll fees before it hands over the upgraded border facility to the Zimbabwean government through a “build, operate and transfer” deal.

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