THE MINISTER OF LABOUR AND HOME AFFAIRS MEETS HIS COUNTERPART FROM THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
The Minister of Labour and Home Affairs, of the Republic of Botswana, Honourable Edwin Jenamiso Batshu, met with his counterpart, the Minister of Home Affairs, Honourable Malusi Gigaba from the Republic of South Africa, in Gaborone on the 14thJuly 2015. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss issues of mutual interest, given that the two countries share more than a thousand kilometres long of common border, 16 border posts, and have many of their people along these borders having close relatives across the borders.
The Honourable Ministers agreed that as neighbours and relatives, Batswana and South Africans have to collaborate and share ideas and expertise on how they can attain safety and security in their countries. Border management is critical to enhancing security within the two countries. The Ministers concurred that the Ministries of Home Affairs play a significant role in safeguarding the safety of their citizens through effective management of migration. They further agreed that ineffective management of migration may result in social, political and economic implications, hence the need for an integrated approach to migration.
Issues discussed at the meeting included, among others; computerisation of ports of entry, modernisation of Immigration systems; hours of operation at border posts; introduction of transit Visas, memorandum of understanding on migration matters, and the establishment of a border crossing point at Tshidilamolomo, which must be operational from the 1st September 2015, and will be launched by the two Ministers. They also discussed the issue of requirements for crossing the border post by unaccompanied minor children.
In conclusion, the Ministers committed to resolving outstanding issues that emanated from the meeting, in the shortest possible time, and even pursue the spirit of partnership and collaboration for the benefit of the two countries