Johannesburg: South Africa's border with Mozambique at Komatipoort was a '"symbol of apartheid", according to a Mozambican tax official, independent media reported. The border crossing point was conceived strategically "to complicate the circulation of people and goods between the two countries", Mozambique's regional tax head for the south of the country, Daniel Tovela, told Canalmoz newssheet. Tovela is also Mozambique's manager for the uniborder to set up a single post between the two countries.
South Africa's border with Mozambique was agreed along the Lebombo mountain chain by the Transvaal government and Portugal in 1869. The border post is flanked by the Komati river and the Kruger National Park.
"The South African regime chose exactly the highest point of the mountain chain to set up the border post to Mozambique," Tovela told the newssheet in a report on Thursday.
"Whoever flees from the police at the border is caught by crocodiles in the Komati. If they escape from the crocodiles, they are devoured by lions in the Park," he said.
Tovela's comments came amidst processes to set up the uniborder to facilitate movement between South Africa and Mozambique. When completed, travellers will only have to stop at one point to be cleared before moving between the two countries.
A limited uniborder is already in place for freight traffic, which stops some distance before the borders on each side for customs clearance.