By Lehlohonolo Lehana.
Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has published a new gazette which provides further details around South Africa’s relaxed level 3 lockdown and the changes to some restrictions.
The gazette gives effect to the national address given by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday evening (1 February), in which he announced that lockdown regulations will be relaxed following a decline in Covid-19 transmissions.
The president said that the country has recorded its lowest daily increase in infections since December, and that the country has now passed the peak of the second wave.
The average number of daily infections has almost halved, while the number of hospital admissions has also dropped, the president said.
Below are some of the key points of the relaxed lockdown, as outlined by the gazette. These changes came into effect from publication.
Curfew and movement of people
Every person is confined to their place of residence from 23h00 until 04h00 daily, unless a person is performing an essential service or has an emergency. People travelling on late-night flights have also been given exemption.
Any person who fails to abide by the new curfew commits an offence and is, on conviction, liable to a fine or a period of imprisonment not exceeding six months or to both a fine and imprisonment.
Closing time for the following establishments, whether indoors or outdoors, is 22h00:
- Museums, galleries and archives:
- Public swimming pools;
- Beaches and public parks;
- Game parks, botanical gardens and zoos
- Gyms and fitness centres;
- Venues hosting auctions: and
- Venues hosting professional sport.
The sale of liquor by licensed premises for off-site consumption is permitted from 10h00 to 18h00, from Mondays to Thursdays. excluding Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays:.
The sale of liquor by licensed premises for on-site consumption is permitted, from 10h00 to 22h00.
The above does not apply to duty-free shops, registered wineries, wine farms. microbreweries and micro-distilleries – these establishments may sell alcohol for off-site consumption during their normal operating hours, per their licences.
The transportation of liquor is also permitted.
- Gatherings at faith-based institutions, are permitted but limited to 50 persons or less for indoor venues and 100 persons or less for outdoor venues. If the venue is too small to hold the prescribed number of persons observing a distance of at least one and a half metres from each other, then not more than 50% of the capacity of the venue may be used;
- All social gatherings are prohibited;
- All beaches, dams, lakes and rivers, inclusive of all recreational facilities at these places are open to the public: Provided that all health protocols and social distancing measures are adhered to;
- All public swimming pools. including recreational facilities at such places, are open to the public subject to limitation of 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors;
- Night clubs remain closed to the public.
Opening and closure of schools
The gazette makes special mention of the opening and closure of schools and notes that the Basic education minister Angie Motshekga may publish a directive which determines the dates on which schools may be opened or closed.
Motshekga is also responsible for providing any guidance on matters related to the management of schools in the basic education sector, to address, prevent and combat the spread of Covid-19 in all schools.