OHANNESBURG: Madeleine Hicklin, the Democratic Alliance Member of Parliament said as a party, they intend writing to the Department of Home Affairs and that of Health in South Africa demanding an investigation regarding the restrictions within the boarders that prevent workers and students who regularly cross to South Africa in the midst of the COVID-19 epidemic.
This comes after citizens from neighbouring countries including eSwatini complained that the COVID-19 clearance certificate was too costly hence it remains impossible for low income earners to enter South Africa while the future of students and jobs of workers who regularly cross the boarder remain at stake
Speaking to Swaziland News this week, MP Madeleine Hicklin said she will write to Ministers of Health and Home Affairs requesting that an investigation be conducted to ascertain the challenges faced within the boarders and that the needs of those scholars, students and workers who have to cross the border between Eswatini and South Africa on a regular basis be addressed.
"We need to ensure the safe passage of South African citizens to and from their places of study and work as a matter of priority. This is imperative if the lives and livelihoods of our citizens is guaranteed", said the DA Member of Parliament.
This publication reported last week about the chaos that erupted at the Oshoek border where trucks from South Africa were restricted from entering the Kingdom of Eswatini shortly after the South African Cabinet opened the boarders with certain restrictions.
Travellers were required to provide evidence of COVID-19 negative results which are less than 72 hours, Emaswati are required to fork out about E2000.00 for travel documents, transport and other costs. COVID-19 testing alone costs between E800 to E1200.
Minister of Health Lizzie Nkosi when reached for comments said Eswatini is aligned with provisions in SA regulations regarding learners and educators needing to cross borders daily or frequently.
She further refutes claims that the government has appointed far more expensive companies to conduct COVID-19 tests while the cheaper companies were overlooked.
“The same companies that have been doing PCR tests throughout the response, are the ones doing them now. No company is being denied the right to do PCR tests if they are accredited by WHO and they are legally registered in Eswatini,” said the Health Minister .
Democratic Alliance MP Madeleine Hicklin