Notice to travellers using South African borders over the 2013 Easter period
Pretoria, 26 March 2013 – The South African Government’s Border Control Operational Coordinating Committee (BCOCC) would like to update the media and the public on plans to manage the expected high volumes of travellers using South Africa’s main border posts over the upcoming Easter period.
Easter is one of the busiest periods for South Africa’s border posts, with exceptionally high numbers of travellers crossing in a relatively short space of time. Over Easter in 2012, the Beit Bridge border post saw 496 282 arrivals and 406 032 departures. Over the same period, the Lebombo border post saw 352 324 arrivals and 304 682 departures.
A range of plans are in place on the part of all government departments and agencies responsible for managing operations at South Africa’s borders. These operational activities will be monitored by the National Border
Management Coordination Centre (NBMCC). Staffing numbers will be increased to ensure the smooth facilitation of travellers and goods, and border posts will be closely monitored to ensure that contingency plans can be speedily implemented wherever necessary to ease any backlogs.
Crime prevention measures will also be intensified in a coordinated manner at all the key ports of entry by the relevant government departments and agencies.
The following border posts, known to deal with high volumes of travellers, will be working extended operating hours as follows:
- Beit Bridge: 24 hour post
- Lebombo: 24 hour post from 25 March to 14 April
- Oshoek: 24 hours on 28 March only, otherwise 06:00 – midnight
- Mahamba: 07:00 – midnight on 28 March only, otherwise 07:00 – 22:00
- Mananga: 07:00 – 20:00 on 28 March only, otherwise 07:00 – 18:00
- Jeppe’s Reef: 07:00 – midnight on 28 March only, otherwise 07:00 – 20:00
- Maseru: 24 hour post
- Ficksburg: 24 hour post
- Qacha’s Nek: 07:00 – midnight from 27 to 29 March, otherwise 07:00 – 20:00.
- Kopfontein: 06:00 – midnight
- Groblersbrug: 24 hour post on 28 and 31 March and 1 April, otherwise 06:00 – 22:00
Travellers should also note that, in order to relieve expected congestion at Beit Bridge, the Musina Showground (including the Department of Transport Weight Bridge) has been designated as a Port of Entry from 23 – 29th March. The clearance process will be as follows:
- All cross-border busses and taxis will be diverted into the Department of Transport Weight Bridge at Musina by the SAPS and other law enforcement agencies
- Vehicles will queue and be released under escort to the Showground
- All normal border clearance processes will be conducted at the Showground
- All cleared vehicles and passengers will be escorted in convoy by SAPS and traffic officers to the Beit Bridge border post.
- No additional formalities will be conducted at the border post once clearance is done at the Musina Showground, unless it is thought necessary to conduct further security checks.
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