by TINTSWALO BALOYI
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – SOUTH AFRICA has moved to adjusted Level One of the coronavirus lockdown following the country exiting the third wave of the pandemic.
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the adjustments during a televised speech on Thursday evening.
The country has been on Level Two since September 12.
Under Level One, the sale of alcohol – for both off-site and on-site consumption – will be permitted, according to normal licence provisions.
However, no alcohol may be sold after 23h00.
The maximum number of people permitted at a funeral will increase from 50 to 100.
Night vigils, after-funeral gatherings and ‘after-tears’ gatherings remain banned.
The maximum number of people permitted to gather indoors will increase from 250 to 750.
The maximum number of people allowed to gather outdoors will increase from 500 to 2 000.
The hours of the curfew will change, from 00h00 to 04h00.
The wearing of masks in public places is still mandatory.
Failure to wear a mask when required remains a criminal offence.
Ramaphosa said as part of the effort to return the most affected parts of the economy to operation, government was looking at further relaxation of restrictions, particularly with respect to sporting and cultural events.
The president reiterated calls for citizens to vaccinate, as currently the most effective response to the pandemic.
“Getting vaccinated is not only about protecting yourself and those around you,” he said.
“It is also about preventing new and more dangerous variants from emerging, as the virus is able to spread and mutate in unvaccinated populations.”
The Department of Health will soon be rolling out a vaccination certificate, which will provide a secure and verifiable proof of vaccination.
South Africa has recorded over 2,9 million cases and over 87 626 COVID-19 deaths.
It has administered more than 17,5 million vaccines.
– CAJ News