South Africa

Thursday's level 3 lockdown briefings: five things we'd like clarity on

Thursday's level 3 lockdown briefings: five things we'd like clarity on

Minister of co-operative governance & traditional affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and trade and industry minister Ebrahim Patel are on Thursday expected to outline the regulations which will apply to level 3 of the lockdown from June 1.

President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday said the eased lockdown would allow various economic sectors to resume operations. He said ministers would provide details about the changes in regulations this week.

Dlamini-Zuma and Patel will hold a news briefing on the regulations from 2pm on Thursday. Then at 5pm a ministerial justice, crime prevention and security cluster briefing will be held “on security-related matters for Covid-19 level 3 restrictions”.

Here are five areas you might get clarity on during the briefings:

Religious gatherings

Ramaphosa announced on Tuesday that places of worship would reopen, but under stringent conditions. Congregants will be required to wear masks and maintain social distancing. As things stand, churches may allow no more than 50 congregants, depending on space available.

  • Will this number change in accordance to the capacity of the church?
  • Will places of worship be permitted to host more than one service in one day to minimise overcrowding?
  • How will the government monitor whether lockdown regulations are being adhered to in churches? 

Domestic workers

  • Can domestic workers return to work?
  • Can they use public transport or are employers required to organise private transport? 

Travelling/transport 

Travelling between provinces will still be prohibited, but domestic air travel is allowed for business purposes.

  • Sunday Times reported that draft regulations require companies with 500 employees or more to provide transport for their workers to limit overcrowding in public transport. Will this come into effect?
  • If so, how will the government ensure that companies make transport provisions for their employees?
  • What are the safety measures for domestic air travel?
  • Can citizens drive between provinces for business? If yes, will they need a permit?

Sale of alcohol 

Ramaphosa on Sunday announced that a ban on the sale of alcohol would be lifted, with some restrictions in place.

  • How many times a week will the sale of alcohol be permitted?
  • What measures need to be followed by liquor shops to limit overcrowding? 
  • Who will monitor home consumption of alcohol?

Exercise and public parks

The president said the three-hour exercise window would be lifted but exercising in groups would be prohibited. Under level 4 of the lockdown, citizens are allowed to exercise only within a 5km radius of their homes between 6am and 9am. 

  • Can public parks be used for exercise?
  • What constitutes a group?