By STAFF REPORTER
ZIMBABWE has entered into bilateral arrangements with Botswana, Zambia and Mozambique to modernise border posts.
This was disclosed last Thursday in Parliament by Finance deputy minister Clemence Chidawu while issuing a ministerial statement on government plans to spruce up the country’s border posts.
Chidawu said Zimbabwe would partner Botswana and Zambia to ensure that Kazungula becomes a one-stop-border post.
“With respect to the Kazungula Border Post, engagements are currently in progress with the Transport and Infrastructural Development ministry on the Kazungula one-stop border post to ensure that Zimbabwe joins the one-stop border post arrangement with Botswana and Zambia,” Chidawu said. “The project will be implemented on a phased approach due to the shortage of funding starting with the refurbishment of the current border offices and customs yard.”
He said phase one of the project was expected to commence on August 15, while phase two would involve Zimbabwe joining the one-stop border arrangements with Zambia and Botswana. Kazungula Border Post is in Matabeleland North province and is an entry point to Botswana and Zambia.
Chidawu said plans were underway for Zimbabwe and Mozambique to sign a bilateral agreement to increase the Forbes Border Post’s operating hours, as well as to upgrade its infrastructure.
“With regards to the issue of limited parking space at the border post, I wish to advise that a truck park is being developed in order to address the challenge. The park will also house Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) offices for the clearance of commercial trucks. Designs of the park have been finalised and this will be followed by the tendering process to appoint the contractor,” he
Chidawu said Plumtree and Nyamapanda border posts had already been solar-powered to ensure uninterrupted power supply.
“Back-up power is also being provided through the use of diesel-powered generators at all the other border posts except for small border posts such as Mukumbura in Mashonaland Central and Mpoengs in Matabeleland South.”
He said a canine unit would be deployed at all major border posts namely Beitbridge, Nyamapanda, Chirundu, Plumtree, Forbes, Kazungula and Victoria Falls, including at the country’s airports to beef up security.