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Govt names ports of entry and borders to be closed over COVID-19

Home Affairs Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi said in terms of ports of entry at sea, they would close two out of the eight.

FILE: The Beit Bridge border post between South African and Zimbabwe. Picture: @HomeAffairsSA/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday announced that 35 of South Africa's land borders and two seaports would be closed from 18 March 2020 as a measure to control the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Home Affairs Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi on Monday outlined the steps his department would take in this regard.

Motsoaledi said in terms of ports of entry at sea, they would close two out of the eight.

“There will be commercial activity at Saldanha Bay and Mossel Bay like all the other six which are remaining. The only difference is that we will no longer allow passengers to disembark at Saldanha Bay and Mossel Bay,” he said.

The minister explained what measures were taken for the 35 closed land border posts.

“There will be 12 border posts of entry which will be closed between SA and Botswana. It means five will remain operating because they were 17. We’ll close nine border posts with Lesotho – it means five will remain operating because we had 14.

“We’ll close three border posts with Mozambique – it means only one will remain operating because we had four. We’ll close five border posts with Namibia, it means only two will remain operating because we had seven. We had only one border post with Zimbabwe - Beitbridge Border post – it will remain open.”

He said all the 11 airports in the country would not be closed.

To track the latest developments around the coronavirus both in South Africa and abroad, click on this live status report from Strategix.