With the number of new daily infections for COVID-19 continuing to rise, as well as provinces like the Free State and Gauteng said to be in the midst of a third wave of infections, the president has confirmed that the country will be moving to an adjusted level 2 lockdown tomorrow, 31st May.
The changes in lockdown level will take effect in line with a newly determined curfew, which starts at 23:00 in the evening until 04:00 in the morning. The curfew will also see restaurants closing by 22:00, and only permitted individuals will be allowed to travel during the curfew hours.
— Presidency | South Africa 🇿🇦 (@PresidencyZA) May 30, 2021
Along with the new curfew, Ramaphosa also outlined some changes as far as gatherings are concerned, with no more than 100 people allowed for indoor events and 250 for outdoor ones. Added to this, those concerned about alcohol sales have been told that sale hours will remain the same during adjusted level 2 lockdown as they have been during level 1 over the past couple of months.
The president touched on the vaccine rollout too, noting that measures will be taken to ensure that more South Africans are able to register effectively, while also viewing the rollout to date to be a success. While we do not share Ramaphosa’s sentiments on that front, we do share the opinion that the rollout needs to be ramped up as quickly as possible, particularly as the most vulnerable segments of the population have been earmarked to be inoculated during phase two.
Lastly, the president has hesitant to say that the country is in a third wave of infections, explaining that we have been able to hold off for now, and need to continue to do so.
Whether that can be achieved, remains to be seen.
[Image – CC BY-ND 2.0 GovernmentZA on Flickr]