Advocacy group AfriForum has announced that it is also considering litigation against government to force it to reopen the economy.
It briefed the media on the group’s comprehensive plan to promote independence from the state, self-reliance and community cooperation. This comes a day after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that some areas will be gradually moved to Level three of risk adjustment at the beginning of next month.
In this video below President Ramaphosa indicates that lockdown could move to Level 3:
AfriForum says government has lost focus in the fight against the coronavirus in the country. The group says some lockdown regulations are unnecessary and are killing the economy.
Regarding safety, AfriForum says it will continue to build self-management models through volunteers who joined AfriForum branches. AfriForum’s head of community development Johan Kruger says the on-going lockdown affects businesses, especially small businesses, negatively.
“We will start seeing more and more litigation regarding the reopening of the economy and the levels because we see an increased frustration among businesses and small businesses. We cannot operate at this stage so but the cost is too high. They want to stave off hunger but, stay healthy and not die through the virus. It is a difficult situation but I think we will see more litigation within the coming weeks,” says Kruger.
AfriForum says its safety structures are geared to act within the framework of the law. It will be extending its online training. The body says it is also full steam ahead with the distribution of food and essential items in communities.
AfriForum’s head of community Ian Cameron says food shortages and loss of income during the current lockdown may result in an increase in crime. Cameron further said political interference in food distribution leads to some communities suffering because they are left out. He urged communities to cooperate for their own benefits.
“We need to emphasise that communities must support each other in this difficult time. It’s crucial that we once again figuratively speaking take hands and make sure that we build networks to support each other because if we do not do that the ANC will starve our children,” says Cameron.
Meanwhile, AfriForum says it will petition the Constitutional Court, regarding it’s dismissed High Court application against Tourism Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane’s decision to provide support to distressed firms and establishments in the tourism sector based on broad-based BEE codes.
Last month the High Court in Pretoria dismissed the application saying both the trade union Solidarity and AfriForum failed to advance any review grounds. AfriForum’s head of community development Johan Kruger says they will now approach the Constitutional Court directly in the matter.
“Due to our case going to the Constitutional Court to appeal the use of Black Economic Empowerment in financial assistance. I think that on a higher level where that is something that we didn’t hesitate to go court on because it’s such an important principle,” says Kruger.
AfriForum says it will continue to launch campaigns aimed at ensuring that the rights of communities and minority groups are protected.