Limpopo Health MEC Phophi Ramathuba has confirmed that 17 incidents have been recorded of people trying to enter South Africa from Zimbabwe with false negative coronavirus tests.

Dr Ramathuba has warned that strict border controls are in place and people trying to enter South Africa with false coronavirus test results will not succeed.

She says government is determined to protect the population from any further spread of the coronavirus.

Dr Ramathuba says some of the people trying to enter South Africa are submitting a blood test when they should be taking a proper coronavirus test.

Zimbabwe and South Africa to beef up security at Beitbridge Border post: 

Meanwhile, Mpumalanga Health MEC Sasekani Manzini has also raised concerns that some people are using fraudulent COVID-19 certificates to cross the border.

She was speaking during a visit to the Oshoek Border Post to assess the port of entry’s compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

“Now we are told that there are fraudulent tests that are coming here, but we are happy that we have SAPS. The people are arrested. So, be warned that you get a test from a lab that is accredited to do those tests because there are a way and system in place to pick it up.”

Oshoek Border Post is one of the busiest ports of entry during the festive season. This year, border authorities have their hands full as they will not only be focusing on crime-related issues but also at ensuring that travellers comply with all COVID-19 protocols.

Despite concerns on the fraudulent certificates, Manzini says she is satisfied with the work done by the officials at the border post so far and they are ready for the influx of people who will be crossing to neighbouring Eswatini and Mozambique.

Manzini has urged residents to obey all COVID-19 regulations during the festive season.

Oshoek Border Post Manager, Life Mokoena, says about 15 people were arrested since last month for producing fake COVID-19 certificates. He says most of the suspects were coming from Eswatini.

“What we did, we took all of them and handed them over to the Royal Eswatini police so that they can assist in investigating as to where actually these results were manufactured in Eswatini.  But all of them were arrested. The other challenge that we experience is the challenge of people who are coming with positive test results to the port of entry and start walking around the port of entry resulting to the port of entry having to be closed which actually disturbs the entire operation.”

Some of the motorists have expressed satisfaction with the processes put in place to combat the spread of the virus.

Travellers arrested at Oshoek Border post for producing fraudulent COVID-19 test result certificates: