Coronavirus: R37m project to repair Zimbabwe border announced

Coronavirus: R37m project to repair Zimbabwe border announced

- South Africa will be mending fences along its border with Zimbabwe

- The R37 million project will seek to secure entry points into the country

- This comes as SA tries to ensure it has as much control over the spread of Covid-19 as possible

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Public Works Minister Patricia de Lille has announced that the border between South Africa and Zimbabwe will be secured.

Emergency procurement procedures have been invoked to ensure 40 kilometres of fence along the border is repaired and, in some places, erected.

eNCA reports that the Beitbridge border is notorious for its illegal crossovers, with illicit migrants often crawling through gaps in the fencing.

De Lille commented on the decision to make repairing the fencing a priority in the midst of the pandemic:

"This is to ensure that no undocumented or infected persons cross into the country and vice-versa. This is in line with one of the measures announced by the president in that South Africa's borders and ports are to be secured with immediate effect."

READ ALSO: Coronavirus: Mkhize confirms 202 cases, urges citizens to take action reported that President Cyril Ramaphosa had ordered the closure of 35 out of the 53 land entry points into SA.

Minister De Lille pointed out that this would not be effective if the border itself was porous:

"This measure will, however, not be effective if the fences at the border are not secure, which in many places, they are not."

De Lille confirmed that the R37 million project to finish 40 kilometres of fencing will begin this week and conclude in a month's time.

On Friday, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize announced that the number of confirmed cases in South Africa has risen to 202.

Commenting on the predicted spread of the virus, Mkhize revealed projections indicate between 60% and 70% of citizens will contract the coronavirus.

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