The atmosphere at the Beitbridge border post has reached boiling point as thousands of Zimbabweans remains stuck on their quest to return to South Africa. Videos circulating paint a grim picture and the lack of protection against Covid-19 is worrying.
An iAfrica24 correspondent has spoken to some individuals who said they have been at the border post since Sunday and have not crossed at the time of writing this article (Tuesday afternoon, 5 January). To make matters worse, Zimbabwe authorities closed off their side of the border to informal traders on the 5th of January.
The situation has also caused tension on social media with South Africans calling for a closure of the Beitbridge Border post. Thousands of worried South Africans shared the #CloseBeitbridgeBorder as they feared if allowed, the Zimbabweans would cause massive problems with the spread of Covid-19.
Lerato Pillay also added : “What is happening at beitbridge is nonsense. SA is under level 3 lockdown and we are even arrested for not wearing a mask, But Zim illegal alliens are galloping without any social distancing or masks, Zimbabweans are the ones who can fix their own country
Many South African seemed to agree with the call to #CloseBeitbridgeBorder and thousands had retweeted. The unanimous cause of concern was the lack of Covid-19 PPeE especially masks and social distancing judging by the photos shared. The general feeling was that there is not enough tracing that if allowed to enter, all those allowed would be Covid free.