$240m upgrade for Beitbridge

Cabinet has approved the upgrading of Beitbridge Border Post, with talks for a loan of $239 million already underway.

BY XOLISANI NCUBE

Transport and Infrastructure Development minister, Jorum Gumbo confirmed that talks are underway for a loan deal so that the country’s busiest border post could, be upgraded to international standards.

“The idea is to ensure we close leakages and improve trade. This project would facilitate improved movement of goods and people,” he said.

Gumbo said, already, Cabinet has approved that Zimborders, a local consortium, be the contractor for the project.

Although he could not disclose the actual upgrading that is to be undertaken by his ministry, Zimborders was given the tender in 2016, but work could not start due to infighting within Zanu PF and former President Robert Mugabe’s government.

After the ascendency of Emmerson Mnangagwa to the presidency last November, the local company has been mandated to undertake works on the country’s busiest border post.
Government insiders state that the upgrading works will include the construction of a new bridge, rehabilitation of the weighbridge and upgrading of communication and security systems.

The project seeks to upgrade the road network to and from the bridge, installing gate control infrastructure and erecting a perimeter fence around the post. Other facilities to be upgraded include the parking areas, commercial centre and staff accommodation.

The border post will also be computerised and have its lighting systems upgraded.

Beitbridge Border Post is one of the busiest inland ports in sub-Saharan Africa and links the northern and southern corridors, with 500 vehicles and 10 000 travellers passing through the port daily.

However, the port lacks soft and hard infrastructure that includes information technology and inspection bays, among others, to deal with high volumes of traffic have resulted in a lot of inconvenience to travellers.

Travellers spend between six and 18 hours at the port of entry to complete immigration and customs formalities.

The clearance of commercial traffic can take up to three days. The border is one of the most porous in the entire region, something which has made Zimbabwe’s counterpart in South Africa uneasy.

12 Comments

  1. Good news for my home town. When they get to implement the project; consider setting up a massive escalator on the bridge, ma mbuya anobva ku Harare aremerwa nekutakura mikwende nekufamba accross the bridge.

  2. WHAT ABOUT HARARE – BEITBRIDGE ROAD AKOMA YATOVE HONDO KUIFAMBA.

    1. KAISHO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2. taura hako

  3. In my opinion $240 million is an exorbitant price for this project. Simple math reveals to buy a complete house with nice interiors on 300m2 land costs about $35 000. To buy 200 units will cost $7 million. To build must be cheaper but let’s just take the market price. A perimeter fence must not cost more than $2 million. To build a state of the art modern warehouse and offices must not cost more than $50 million the interior equipment included. How we get to $240 million to me sounds too exorbitant. As Zim let’s learn to be cost effective.

    mind to make the same error NSSA did on building the Beitbridge – the error of building a hotel which would break even after 150 years.

    1. I tend to agree with you. Ours is not an issue of money but perhaps of attitude. Some of the money should be channeled to training ZIMRA officials on how to handle travelers and cargo more efficiently. This bahaviour of harassing people and charging ridiculous fees is our major undoing as a nation and we are slowly but surely losing out to Botswana. That country has the temerity of inviting us to witness and celebrate our downfall at Kazungula Bridge linking it with Zambia, bypassing both Zimbabwe and Namibia at that point on the mighty Zambezi River, where we justifiably and according to international law claim territorial jurisdiction.

    2. ANESU CHIMKUPETE

      Well the project includes highway re-development,

  4. I hope they will also erect water and sanitation facilities just like our counterparts in South Africa, with running water, increase the number of toilets especially for women and sparkling clean all the time. Kwete kuto zeza kupinda toilet uchimirira yeku SA yaunosvika vachingo cleaner all the time. we need value for money for the busiest boarder remuno mu Zimbabwe.

  5. I THINK WE HAVE LOST OUR MINDS, A BAD BORDER NEVER STOPS ANYONE FROM TRADING ACROSS THE BORDER. IT JUST IMPROVES CONVINIENCE NOT TRADE. MANY COUNTRIES IN AFRICA HAVE BAD INFRASTRUCTURE BUT ARE DOING FAR BETTER THAN US IN CROSS-BORDER TRADE. THERE ARE NO DRUGS IN HISPITALS, DOCTORS’ CONCERNS NEED TO ADDRESSING. CIVIL SERVANTS ARE DISGRUNTLED BY THEY WAGE. EDUCATION PLAN ROLL-OUT HALTED FOR LACK OF FUNDS…WHERE ARE OUR PRIORITIES?

  6. The big question should actually be: is Gumbo grandstanding (again) and who owns the company Zimborders?

  7. Tichaona, perhaps the difference is for the building of a new bridge??
    Maybe we should be finding out who owns Zimborders?? Probably a good friend of someone high up??

  8. Arikunyepa Jorum Gumbo hapana chinobuda apa. Ndadaro nekuti ndiyezve arikutaura nezveBeitbridgeHarare highway dualisation yaane (4) four years ichingobuda mumapepa asi pagroundhapana chiripo.Jorumhaabviri kunyepa. Izvozvi 2018 anopera pasina kana kachuru kagredhewa kugadzira highway yacho. Zve Beitbridge izvoo ndoo nhema.

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