Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to convene a special President’s Coordinating Council meeting in an effort to relax some of the Level 3 lockdown restrictions.
Winde wrote to the president today listing some proposed changes. These include lifting the ban on beaches and public spaces, amending the curfew, and allowing for the offsite sale of liquor from Monday to Thursday.
He says there is a sustained decline in active cases, hospitalizations, and people testing positive in the province.
“We are saying, we don’t have to go all the way, but we have to find a happy medium. At the moment, the balance is out. We have also motivated this through showing the impact on jobs in the province. We have put sufficient healthcare response in place; the extra beds that we have put in place; how we managed the oxygen; how we have managed through the peak with bringing on extra staff, etc.”
Western Cape sees a decline in coronavirus cases:
The premier’s colleague, Western Cape Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Ivan Meyer, has also called on his national counterpart for assistance to lift the alcohol ban.
Meyer says he has written to the national Agriculture, Rural Development and Land Reform Minister, Thoko Didiza, to request her assistance in lifting the third ban on wine and other liquor sales.
Last month President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the ban in an effort to relieve the pressure off the healthcare system which was battling to deal with trauma and COVID-19 cases.
President Cyril Ramaphosa moves SA to Level 3 lockdown:
Many of the trauma cases were alcohol-related.
Meyer says wine export is the third biggest export of the province’s economy.
He says research shows that the first two weeks of the ban cost the economy R1 billion and if it continues for the duration of the month, R2 billion will be lost and impact on close to 5 600 jobs in the Western Cape.
“I have now written an urgent letter to the national government requesting them to immediately lift the ban on the sale of alcohol. It will help to save lives, and livelihoods the economy of the Western Cape is dependent on agriculture, and wine is an agricultural project. We must save jobs in the wine industry.”
The latest coronavirus stats in SA: