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ZIMBABWE’S biggest port of entry, Beitbridge Border Post which borders the country with South Africa, risks being closed next week after workers in the neighbouring country’s Home Affairs Department, including immigration officers gave notice to go on strike and down tools over overtime pay.

The Federation of Unions of South Africa and Public Servants Association served that country’s Department of Home Affairs with a notice to go on strike from 19 June after a stalemate over the issue of overtime pay when the workers work on Saturday.

The employees are demanding payment, instead of days off, for working on Saturdays but South African Government is arguing that it would incur a serious budget shortfall if it were to accede to demands of workers’ unions.

Zimbabwean officials are however, optimistic that the South African Home Affairs Department and its workers will reach an agreement to avert the strike.

If the no movement is effected as stated by the union leaders, it means Beitbridge will be closed for the day posing serious movement problems not only for Zimbabwe but for the rest of the region. Beitbridge handles more than 3 500 vehicles and 9 000 people on average on a daily basis.

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