President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that South Africa will, from today at midnight, move from level 1 back to an adjusted Level 3 of lockdown in intensified efforts to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus. He says new infections are rising at “alarming and unprecedented manner.”
Since Christmas Eve, there have been more than 50 000 new positive COVID-19 cases in the country.
Ramaphosa: We can, we will and we must defeat this pandemic. This New Year’s Eve, instead of parties or lightning fireworks, let us light a candle for all those who have lost their lives to the virus #sabcnews #level5
— Taliesha Naidoo (@Taliesha_Naidoo) December 28, 2020
Addressing the nation, Ramaphosa identified KwaZulu-Natal, Western Cape, Gauteng, and Eastern Cape as leading the new cases.
Limpopo is also seeing a significant increase in infections.
The president has announced the adjusted Level 3 regulations.
“Under the adjusted Level 3 regulations: All indoor and outdoor gatherings will be prohibited for 14 days from the date hereof, except for funerals and other limited exceptions as detailed in the regulations, such as restaurants, museums, gyms, and casinos.”
The curfew has also been extended.
“The nationwide curfew will be extended from 9pm to 6am. Apart from permitted workers and for medical and security emergencies, nobody is allowed outside their place of residence during the curfew.”
The new regulations will also see non-essential establishments closing earlier.
“Non-essential establishments – including shops, restaurants, bars, and all cultural venues – must close at 8pm. The list of these establishments will be released shortly.”
The sale of alcohol has again been banned until January 15.
“Night clubs and businesses engaged in the sale and transportation of liquor will not be allowed to operate. The Level 3 restrictions will remain in place until 15 January 2021. These measures will be reviewed at that time on the basis of the state of the pandemic in the country.”
To curb the spread of the virus, President Ramaphosa says those who do not wear masks will be punished.
“From now on, it is compulsory for every person to wear a mask in a public space. A person who does not wear a cloth mask covering over the nose and mouth in a public place will be committing an offence. A person who does not wear a mask could be arrested and prosecuted. On conviction, they will be liable to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or to both a fine and imprisonment.”
More areas have been declared hotspots.
“In the Western Cape, the West Coast District, Overberg District, Winelands District, Cape Town, Central Karoo District are hotspots. This is in addition to the Garden Route District.”
— Presidency | South Africa 🇿🇦 (@PresidencyZA) December 28, 2020
President Cyril Ramaphosa’s address:
New Level 3 lockdown adjustments:
SA moves from Level 1 back to Level 3 of the lockdown
The curfew has been extended from 9am to 6am.
Alcohol sales from retail outlets will not be permitted
On-site consumption of alcohol will not be permitted
No consumption of alcohol in public spaces, including parks and beaches
Not wearing a mask is considered an offence, with the possibility of fine, imprisonment or both.
All indoor and outdoor gatherings are prohibited for the next 14 days, except for funerals and other limited exceptions.