South Africa moves to COVID-19 adjusted Level 2 from 31 May 2021
South Africa has been moved to COVID-19 adjusted Level 2 from Monday, 31 May 2021 as a preventative measure against the third COVID-19 wave; there were 4 519 new COVID-19 recorded cases on Saturday. President Cyril Ramaphosa said, “The third wave of coronavirus infections must be held back to allow the vaccine rollout to save lives.” To do so, he called on South Africans to observe the existing rules, as well as consider how to minimise contact with others. "I ask you to summon your strength, your courage and your tenacity as South Africans to stand together and to hold back this third wave," President Ramaphosa said in the closing section of his address to the nation.
President Ramaphosa did not, as he has done before, say that new lockdown restrictions may come if citizens failed to adhere to current rules. Instead, he appealed directly for individuals to consider the life-of-death consequences of daily decisions. Delaying the spread of the virus is especially important now to allow as many people as possible to be vaccinated before the third wave reaches its peak. Every week that we delay the peak of the third wave allows us to vaccinate hundreds of thousands more people and may well save their lives."
He announced three changes to current lockdown rules:
South Africa has vaccinated more than 67 percent of public healthcare workers, said President Cyril Ramaphosa. But he urged citizens to go beyond just strict adherence to the rules such as wearing masks, stressing that not doing so is a criminal offence and also "to think about all the people we come into contact with each day and do everything we can to limit those contacts."
Where social contact is unavoidable, masks, distance and ventilation is important, he said.
National State of Disaster extended until 15 June 2021
Cabinet has approved the extension of the National State of Disaster on COVID-19 on Thursday, 13 May 2021, until 15 June 2021. “The extension considers the need to continue augmenting the existing legislation and contingency arrangements undertaken by organs of state to mitigate against the impact of the disaster on lives and livelihoods,” a statement released by Cabinet. The extension has been approved in terms of Section 27(5)(c) of the Disaster Management Act, 2002 (Act 57 of 2002).
While writing this article, I feel a very high sense of déjà vu but also empathy and compassion for our first responders and frontline workers that have to deal with the ignorance and stupidity of the public. Let us hope that we can minimise the third wave while keeping ourselves and our families and friends safe.
COVID-19 Resources page
The FRI COVID-19 Resources page is updated regularly for the benefit of our readers, providing you with all relevant information available on a single platform, saving you the time of searching for documents and links.
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