The lockdown period has been extended to 30 April 2020.
The Disaster Management Regulations related to COVID-19 therefore still apply, with some changes. The changes aim to manage the remainder of the lockdown and to enable a phased and controlled return to normal economic and social activity.
Here are the main takeaways from the amended regulations, published 16 April 2020.
Movement between district, metropolitan and provincial borders
Movement between district, metropolitan and provincial borders is prohibited with limited exceptions. Essential goods can be transported, and essential workers can continue to travel to their places of work. People can also move, with exceptions, for funerals and to transport children between their parents/guardians.
Funerals are limited to 50 people and only close family members (spouses, children, children-in-law, parents, siblings, grandparents, persons closely affiliated with the deceased) are allowed to attend.
If you need to cross district, metropolitan or provincial borders to attend a funeral you need a permit.
With the permit application, you need to produce the death certificate or a certified copy or digital copy of the death certificate to designated persons (such as a court official or police officer). Where the death certificate is not available and for cultures in which burial takes place quickly (within 24 hours) you need to make a sworn affidavit supported by a letter from a cultural or religious leader to be allowed to travel to the funeral.
Schools must remain closed until 30 April 2020.
Movement of children between caregivers and co-holders of parental rights is prohibited, except where arrangements are in place for the child to move from one parent to another in terms of a court order, parenting plan (that was registered with the family advocate), or the co-holder of parental rights has an original or certified copy of the child’s birth certificate to prove a legitimate relationship between the child and parent. The parent must have these documents in their possession.
However, a child cannot be moved to a home where there is a person known or reasonably suspected to have contracted COVID-19.
Imports and exports
Goods currently at ports of entry for export will be allowed to leave the port, in order to decongest ports. Imported goods at ports of entry will be allowed to be transported to their intended destination, even if these goods have to cross between provinces.
Detention facilities and shelters
All visits by members of the public to detention facilities (such as prisons), child and youth care centres, and various other shelters are suspended for the period of the lockdown.
Essential goods and services
Stores selling hardware products and vehicle components are allowed to sell some essential hardware and vehicle parts. These stores must maintain registers of consumers buying these goods, to confirm that the goods sold are essential goods. Hardware needed for water and electricity repairs and emergency repairs at residential homes will be allowed. Selling of parts for vehicles undergoing emergency repairs (only for persons engaged in essential work) is allowed.
Baby clothing and other non-consumables relating to baby care are deemed essential.
Information and communication technology services provided to entities engaged in essential services, are also essential.
Call centres providing services related to health, safety, social support, government and financial services are allowed to operate, with restrictions.
Grocery sellers allowed to operate include informal sellers such as spaza shops. They need a permit in order to operate.
Collieries and refineries must continue to operate in order to secure the energy supply.
Mining operations must continue, but at not more than 50% capacity, and with restrictions. A rigorous screening and testing program must be implemented to avoid employees with COVID-19 coming to work. Quarantine facilities must be provided for employees who test positive for COVID-19. Mining companies must make transport arrangements for employees.
The transport of liquor is prohibited except where it is required for industrial use (such as the making of cleaning products or hand sanitisers).
No one may be evicted from their place of residence during the lockdown period, regardless of whether the residence is a formal or informal residence.
Most contraventions of the regulations can lead to a fine or imprisonment of not more than 6 months (or to both the fine and imprisonment).