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South Africa to construct fence along Zimbabwe border, says minister

Christian Fernsby |
South Africa is planning to erect 40 kilometers of fence along its border with Zimbabwe to keep out undocumented migrants or those infected with the novel coronavirus, a minister said yesterday.

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“Another key intervention by Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) is the installation of a fence at Beitbridge border between South Africa and Zimbabwe,” Public Works Minister, Patricia De Lille said in a statement that highlighted some of her department’s responses in combating the COVID-19 virus.

She said her department’s approach is in line with measures announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa that requires borders and ports secured with immediate effect.

“The President stated that 35 of the 53 land entry points will be closed. This measure will, however, not be effective if the fences at the border are not secure, which in many places, they are not,” she said.

Ramaphosa said yesterday that 150 people tested positive for the COVID-19 virus to date and expressed concern that the numbers of infections could drastically rise if South Africans do not implement measures announced by government, including social distancing and avoiding large gatherings.

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