JOHANNESBURG, Oct. 5 (Xinhua) — South Africa on Thursday unveiled the Border Management Authority (BMA) in its northernmost province of Limpopo in a bid to combat cross-border crime.
Established in response to a number of serious challenges, the BMA was designed to address security, migration, safety, congestion, and long transit problems at the borders, said President Cyril Ramaphosa at the launch of the authority.
“A more secure border is important for curbing illegal migration, human smuggling and trafficking. It will help in combating cross-border crime,” he said. The BMA is tasked to ensure that the country’s immigration laws and regulations are enforced, according to Ramaphosa, who added that the new authority will be redeveloping six ports of entry as one-stop border posts.
While the border guard will conduct border law enforcement functions, including access control, the South African National Defense Force remains responsible for border protection and safeguarding, said Ramaphosa.
Ramaphosa also noted that they see the BMA as a vital link in the country’s efforts to harness the benefits of the African Continental Free Trade Area.