ZAMBIA and Botswana have concluded discussions to create the Kazungula Bridge Authority (KBA) that will be headquartered in Botswana.
The two countries have also agreed that the Chief Executive Officer of the Kazungula Bridge Authority will be a Zambian.
Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi disclosed the outcomes of the meeting in the company of President Hakainde Hichilema.
The two leaders have also agreed that after the formalities were completed, the Kazungula Bridge Authority was expected to discuss ways of expanding access roads, install enhanced ICT technology to facilitate service delivery.
President Masisi said ministers in respective sectors had been assigned to complete all outstanding issues to operationalise all formalities needed to legalise the entity.
“The Authority will be tasked to make the border compete globally by making it a facility of choice for everyone, adding that the bridge’s name will not be changed but will remain as Kazungula, President Masisi said.
And President Hichilema said the Authority would facilitate speed and effective movement of goods to allow the two nations expand their economies.
President Hichilema said the bridge was a regional asset which should be valued and commended the leaders who facilitated its construction.
“Before this bridge was constructed, lives were being lost as people tried to cross over and hence we must value this bridge as a regional asset,” President Hichilema said.
Later, the two leaders toured the Kazungula One-Stop-Border to appreciate issues that delayed clearing of goods and services.
And President Hichilema and President Masisi agreed to resolve challenges that hinder smooth delivery of services at the Kazungula One-Stop-Border post.
The two leaders tasked their ministers in respective sectors to set standards that would remove challenges at the border.
Both President Hichilema and President Masisi gave an ultimatum to their ministers for Commerce to find ways of addressing traffic at the border.
The two Presidents were briefing the media shortly after President Hichilema’s arrival in Kasane for a two-day working visit.
President Hichilema was envisioning proper utilisation of the border that is offering maximum benefits to people and governments.
“We are delaying traffic at the border especially at the Zambian side, we want this to stop and hence the reason for our meeting is to set clear guidelines that will improve services at the border,” President Hichilema said.
And President Masisi expressed his country’s commitment to ensuring flaws which were delaying traffic at the border were dealt with. Dr Masisi called on the minister assigned to unlock the challenges that hinder fast delivery of service at the border to resolve the issues within two months.
“We want the minister assigned to find solutions to challenges at the border then we can go ahead and sign more agreements to benefit our people,” Dr Masisi said. – ZANIS.