Limpopo police and the SANDF have heightened their visibility in and around the Beitbridge Border Post in Musina as more people report cases of robbery. A truck driver was airlifted to the Pietersburg Provincial Hospital in Polokwane last week after he was shot during a robbery while queuing to enter the port.
There are also reports of the killing of five foreign nationals who were crossing illegally in the borderline at the Limpopo River.
The hard lockdown in Zimbabwe has led to a spike in illegal crossing during the Easter long weekend.
Truck drivers have raised concerns about the recent spike in violent crime. One of them is Isaac Muodzeri, who is travelling to the Democratic Republic of Congo, has appealed to both South African and Zimbabwean officials to do something.
“I am going to DRC. I joined the queue yesterday in the morning, it was just 10km before the border so I had to push it the whole night until now; so we don’t know what the problem is. We are asking both the South African and Zimbabwean officials if they can do something just because nowadays, if you are in the queue, thereafter the weighbridge, we are having problems of robberies. They come with guns, so we are not safe.”
Police investigating possible criminal syndicate
Police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo says they are investigating the possibility of a criminal syndicate operating in the area.
“The station management took a decision to heighten visibility along that route because we have had incidences where the truck drivers were attacked and robbed of their belongings. Now recently, one of the truck drivers was shot and robbed of money in US currency and SA currency and his phone. He is still in hospital. The people that we are dealing with are faceless and seem to be planning their criminality.”