Western Cape Minister for Finance and Economic Opportunities, David Maynier, has called on all employers and employees to adhere to COVID-19 safety regulations as the country moves to Alert Level 3 on Monday.

Maynier says while getting the economy going again is important, it is crucial for all employers and employees to adhere to the strict safety measures as more people go back to work.

“For us to ensure that businesses remain open and more people get back to work, it is important that all employers and employees adhere to critical safety measures to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. Importantly, it you can continue to work from home please do so. We have a number of valuable resources for employees and employers returning to work which can be found on the Western Cape government website.”

Winde appeals for adherence

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde earlier called for caution as thousands of people prepare to return to work on Monday when Level 3 of the lockdown comes into effect. He’s appealed to employers and employees to adhere to the strict safety regulations.

The Western Cape has more than 20 000 COVID-19 cases, the highest in the country and 472 fatalities.

Winde says people have to ensure that they change their behaviour. “We will be moving to alert Level 3, so many more businesses will be opening on Monday and again this is a new normal that we are going back to. We have to make sure that we all change our behaviour. We know what the rules are. We must stick to them … mask, social distancing, hand sanitizers, soap and hygiene. We have to make sure that we minimise the spread because what we don’t want to do is move the province back to any high lockdown levels to slow this virus.”

Earlier this week, Winde expressed concern over a huge backlog in the processing of tests for COVID-19 in the province, which affects the rate at which results can be released.

According to the Premier, there’s been a 400% increase in the number of tests conducted in the province since the end of April. He further said the province has a backlog of almost 18 000 tests, which still need to be processed.

“We still have an issue with the backlog in our tests which is very difficult because testing is your ability to measure and gives your ability to manage. We have already engaged and written to the President and engaged with the Minister of Health on this issue. Our backlog now stands at 18 000 and we really need to find a solution to this. If you cannot measure, you cannot manage.”

Winde says the province has seen an additional 16 COVID-19 related deaths in the last 24 hours. The total number of deaths due to the coronavirus in the province is now at 488.

The latest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 infections in the province, stands at just over 20 000. A total of 11 009 people have recovered from the virus.

Currently, just over 800 people are in hospital, with nearly 200 being treated in Intensive Care Units or high care facilities.

In the video below, Alan Winde outlines the targeted COVID-19 hotspots strategy in the Western Cape:

Below is an infographic on the Level 3 lockdown regulations.