Katima Border Post records increase in vehicle movement

Zambezi Governor, Lawrence Sampofu said since the deepening of the Walvis Bay harbour in August 2019, the Katima Mulilo Border Post has experienced an increase in the movement of commercial vehicles entering and leaving Namibia.
The governor while addressing the State of the Region address recently said the region recorded an increase of 70 per cent in trade statistics of commercial vehicles, passing through the border.
He said since August last year the Directorate of customs and excise has collected revenue in excess of N.dollars 88 million and processed 13 321 imports declarations and 14 375 export declarations respectively.
Sampofu said the directorate conducted 40 operations, roadblocks, border and river patrols to curb illegal activities and to ensure regulatory compliance adding that despite these efforts the porousness of the border line has emanated into revenue leakages and unaccounted importation of both dutiable and prohibited goods through smuggling.
‘As a result of the operations conducted 258 perpetrators were penalized to the value of N.dollars 416 000 during the 2019/2020 financial year,’ he noted. .
The law enforcement operations yielded a total number of 202 detentions valued at N.dollars 875 000 and 57 seizures with an approximate value of N.dollars 84 000.
‘In further fulfilling the mandate to protect society all intercepted illicit goods such as cigarettes, alcohol, unauthorized medicines and skin lightening creams were destroyed,’ said Sampofu.
He further said the delays in the expansion and construction of Katima Mulilo Border Post and subsequent implementation of the one stop border concept remains a challenge.
Sampofu said the current lockdown and closing of borders due to COVID-19 has negatively affected the collection of revenue and the supply of goods into the local market.
‘The smuggling of maize grain, maize meal, other agricultural products and several other commercial goods remain rife due to the porousness of the borders, especially the bushy area near Wenela and Katima Mulilo Border posts as well as several illegal crossing points along the Zambezi and Chobe Rivers,’ he said.
He went on to say that there is a need to speed up the construction of a modern border post at Katima Mulilo Border post and implementation of the one stop border post concept.

Source: Namibia Press Agency