Presidents Emmerson Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe and Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa are set to meet today at the Beitbridge border post between their two countries.
According to presidential spokesperson George Charamba, Mnangagwa extended the invitation to Ramaphosa during the recent UN General Assembly in New York. The goal of the meeting is to discuss cross-border issues and cooperation given Beitbridge’s strategic importance as the busiest border crossing in the Southern African region.
Zimbabwe has invested US$300 million in upgrading its side of Beitbridge. Charamba said Mnangagwa wants to showcase these improvements to Ramaphosa.
“Zimbabwe has developed its side of the border which SA plans to do on their side,” said Charamba.
“The development of their (SA) side border should commensurate with our side.
“Mnangagwa invited Ramaphosa and there will be a tour of our border post by the two presidents. The SA side should match the Zimbabwean side,” he stated.
Heavy security was deployed in Beitbridge yesterday ahead of the high-level visit. In 1995, a similar meeting between former presidents Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and Nelson Mandela of South Africa was held at Beitbridge to mark the opening of a new border bridge. Both countries see Beitbridge as economically and politically important to strengthen relations.