Following the country surpassing one million reported cases on Sunday evening, the South African government has decided to move the country back to Alert Level Three.
“In effect, the adjusted Level three regulations will keep the economy open while strengthening measures to reduce transmission,” said South African president, Cyril Ramaphosa in an emotional address on Monday evening.
-There have been more than 50,000 new cases reported since Christmas Eve. The majority of new cases are emerging in KwaZulu-Natal, the Western Cape, Gauteng, and the Eastern Cape.
-Excessive alcohol consumption is also driving up the number of trauma cases in South African hospitals. For this reason, the President announced that the sale of alcohol from retail outlets and the on-site consumption of alcohol will not be permitted. Night clubs and businesses engaged in the sale and transportation of liquor will not be allowed to operate.
-The nationwide curfew will be extended from 9 pm to 6 am, this has been moved from 11 pm to 4 am.
-Non-essential establishments – including shops, restaurants, bars and all cultural venues – must close at 8pm.
-The Level three restrictions will remain in place until 15 January 2021.
“More families will mourn. All because of our actions, and our failure to take responsibility,” Ramaphosa added. “We are at an extremely dangerous point in our fight against the pandemic. Unless we act now and unless we act decisively, the number of new infections will far exceed what we experienced during the first wave and thousands of more people will lose their lives.”