By Thupeyo Muleya
Nine Malawian border jumpers who were intercepted along with 32 others after skipping the border from South Africa have tested positive for Covid-19.
They have now been put on isolation at the National Social Security (NSSA) hotel in Beitbridge. Thirty two others have since been moved by the Government to their embassy in Harare pending repatriation.
The group was intercepted yesterday by security agents on patrol while seeking transport from haulage trucks at a local truck stop.
The Director of Social Welfare in the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Mr Totamirepi Tirivavi confirmed the developments today.
“The group was profiled and screened for the Covid-19 and nine have been isolated in Beitbridge pending further PCR tests,” he said.
“These will only be allowed to travel once they are fit to do so. We have since moved 32 others to Harare in liaison with the Malawian Embassy pending their repatriation.”
Meanwhile, the police are yet to locate 19 people who escaped quarantine in Beitbridge on Monday night.
The escapees are part of the people arrested along the Limpopo for facilitating the smuggling of goods. So far 27 people have escaped from the centre since it started operating.
The first group of eight absconded in the first week of operation prompting authorities to beef up security with the army. The Beitbridge quarantine centre can carry 280 people but the Government has set the maximum at 150.
By midday today the centre had 60 people which includes 33 male adults, seven boys, 15 female adults and five young girls.
In addition, the place is used for screening and dispatching Zimbabweans coming from South Africa to different provincial quarantine centres nearer to their final destinations. The Herald