Source: Border posts beefed up for Christmas period – NewsDay Zimbabwe December 1, 2017
THE Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) has introduced an electronic Temporary Import Permit (E-TIP) to accelerate clearing of motorists arriving for the festive season with close to 100 officers set to be deployed at Beitbridge border post to avoid delaying the holidaying public.
BY OWN CORRESPONDENT
Security will be beefed up inside the border post, notorious for touts and pickpockets, and standard international signage has been put for travellers’ convenience at the major border posts, a senior official said on Wednesday.
“In preparation for the festive season, which is associated with an upsurge in human and vehicular traffic, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority has put in place measures to facilitate smooth clearances at all border posts, including Beitbridge,” Zimra corporate communications head Canisio Mudzimu said.
“Additional staff will be deployed to busy border posts as a way of reducing congestion and expediting clearance of travellers and cargo. Beitbridge border post has been allocated a total of 93 additional staff to assist with clearances.”
Additional clearance points will be created and grouping of traffic according to the green and red routes will be introduced for smooth movement.
Mudzimu said Zimra had also engaged its counterparts for complementary plans to manage the festive season.
White on blue signs synonymous with international ports have been put at Beitbridge, Victoria Falls and Plumtree border posts, where staff will also be beefed up.
“The authority is also in the process of installing signage at other border posts to improve convenience to clients,” Mudzimu said.
“Motorists will now be able to apply for temporary import permits on the Internet prior to travelling.
“Zimra has deployed an Electronic Temporary Import Permit application, which can be downloaded from the Google App Store. The application allows travellers to apply for the Temporary Import Permit (TIP) on the Internet prior to arrival at the border post.”
He advised travellers to properly declare their goods on importation to facilitate quick clearance and avoid inconveniences that arise from wrong declarations.
He warned touts, pickpockets and other undesirerables to keep clear of the customs and excise yards at border posts, which are protected areas.
“Zimra will work in collaboration with law enforcement agencies to ensure that only individuals who are legally supposed to be within the protected zone operate in the border post.”
Further, he said, the closed circuit television (CCTV) system installed at the border and ongoing efforts to repair the perimeter fence and enhance security within the border were expected to complement the work of the law enforcement agencies.
Touts, pickpockets and bogus shipping agents are a menace at Beitbridge during peak periods like Christmas and Easter holidays.
It is anticipated thousands of people will this year return home following the fall of former President Robert Mugabe, whose departure was celebrated universally.
Zimbabweans from all walks of life and across colour and creed took to the streets throughout the world to celebrate the end of Mugabe’s 37-year rule blamed for the economic collapse of Zimbabwe.
Thousands of families broke down as spouses separated in search for a living.
About three million Zimbabweans are believed to be living in self-imposed or forced exile in South Africa where they have settled for inferior jobs just to earn a living.
Most are reportedly keen to return home.