South Africa

Lockdown rules 'unconstitutional and invalid' - high court

Lockdown rules 'unconstitutional and invalid' - high court

The North Gauteng High Court on Tuesday declared the national lockdown regulations for level 3 and level 4 "unconstitutional and invalid".

The case was brought by the Liberty Fighters Network (LFN), which argued that the lockdown restrictions were unlawful and unconstitutional because a state of emergency has not been declared.

In a statement issued by the cabinet, the government said it noted the judgment and said a response would be issued in due course.

Crawford College in Sandton, like many other private schools across South Africa, reopened their doors to grade 7 and 12 pupils on June 1 2020. This comes after the department of basic education backtracked on their decision to have all grade 7 and 12 pupils in SA back in school this week.Covid-19 symptom screenings, sanitisers and social distancing enforcement will now be part of the school's daily operation.

“Government has taken note of the judgment delivered by the Gauteng division of the high court today, June 2, declaring the alert level 4 and alert level 3 lockdown regulations unconstitutional and invalid,” the statement reads.

“The court suspended the declaration of invalidity for a period of 14 days. This means that the alert level 3 regulations remain in operation for now.

“The court has further directed the minister of cooperative governance and traditional affairs [Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma], in consultation with the relevant ministers, to review, amend and republish the regulations with 'due consideration to the limitation each regulation has on the rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights'.

“Cabinet will make a further statement once it has fully studied the judgment,” it added.

LFN's Reyno de Beer told TimesLIVE that he was "relieved" at the judgment.

“The court agreed that the lockdown regulations are unconsitutional and invalid. The court realised that the mere suspension or upliftment would not have been a good idea, so it has given the minister [Dlamini-Zuma] two weeks to rectify the mistakes and report back to court,” he said.

This is a developing story.