Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu says her department is looking at specific issues as it studies Monday’s High Court ruling that allows private Early Childhood Development Centres to operate, provided they adhere to the prescribed COVID-19 safety measures aimed at protecting the children and teachers.

The Solidarity Occupational Guild for Social Workers had applied for an urgent court interdict against the Department of Social Development (DSD).

In the judgment on Monday, Judge Hans Fabricious accepted the expert evidence of the South African Paediatrics Association, which stated that children were biologically less likely to get sick if infected, were unlikely to die of the virus and were probably less infectious.

Fabricius declared the department’s decision that private nursery schools remain closed under Level 3 of the lockdown unlawful and unconstitutional and ordered Zulu to pay the costs of all the applicants.

Zulu says, “We need to do everything we can to make sure that our children walk into safe places. We have to make sure that we reduce the infections, that people stick to the protocols.”

She adds: “We will do this until such time that maybe COVID-19 is something that has become a normal thing in our society. We will make sure that everyone adheres to the protocols because there’s nothing as painful as seeing people dying.”

In the video below, Zulu elaborates her views on ECD centres: