President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that most of South Africa will move to level 3 lockdown from the end of May. Areas where the Covid-19 infection rates are particularly high will remain on level 4.
This means that more businesses will be allowed to operate, providing a much-needed boost for the economy.
Ramaphosa stressed that implementing the lockdown was essential to prevent a surge in infections and enable government to put the measures in place to deal with the pandemic.
“Our response has been guided by advice from world-leading experts,” Ramaphosa said.
The president said that amendments to level 4 regulations will be announced in the coming days.
South Africa is in Day 48 of the national lockdown and the country has recorded 219 Covid-19 related deaths, lower than many Western countries offering advanced public health services. On May 1, the country eased to level 4 lockdown which saw some industries being allowed to operate and the delivery of takeawy food allowed.
“We now have nearly 25 000 additional beds available for quarantine with substantial amounts of PPE,” the president said.
Ramaphosa also thanked the United States for donating 1 000 ventilators to assist with South Africa’s respnse to the coronavirus.
The scourge of gender-based violence continues to stalk our country as the men of this country have declared war on our women.
The DA has urged government to end the lockdown and reopen the economy, with extensive safety measures in place to protect workers and the public.
The party said the lockdown regulations had acquired an overtly political overtone and the confinement restrictions had largely outlived their purpose in slowing the spread of transmission while the health system braces for higher numbers of infections.
The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said this week that the sooner the restrictions were eased from the current level 4 to level 3, the better. It is also demanding the sanitisation of workplaces and public transport, as well as greater community health efforts.
Cosatu is in favour of placing different parts of the country on different levels of restrictions, based on the severity of the outbreak in a particular area.
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