South African President Cyril Ramaphosa addresses the crowd gathered at Miki Yili Stadium, ahead of the celebrations for the 25th anniversary of Freedom Day, in Makhanda, Eastern Cape Province on April 27, 2019.
MICHELE SPATARI | AFP | Getty Images
South Africa has reintroduced a ban on alcohol sales and introduced an exit at night when it appears to limit a rapid force in new coronavirus cases.
In an address to the nation̵
The transition to ban alcohol comes just three weeks after a first three-month ban, which was implemented to restrict space entry and domestic violence, was lifted.
“There is now clear evidence that the resumption of alcohol sales has resulted in significant pressure on hospitals, including trauma and ICU units, due to motor vehicle accidents, violence and related trauma,” Ramaphosa said.
He noted that the infection rate in the country is currently around 12,000 per day, but also said that South Africa has one of the lowest mortality rates in the world, at around 1.5% compared to the global average of about 4.4%. At least 4,079 South Africans have died as a result of the coronavirus since the pandemic arrived in the country in March.
The government has made an additional 28,000 hospital beds available for Covid-19 patients, but Ramaphosa stressed that the country still faces a “serious shortage of more than 12,000 health care professionals, primarily nurses, doctors and physiotherapists.”
“The Coronavirus storm is much harsher and more devastating than we have known before,” Ramaphosa said. “It stretches our resources and our determination to their limits.”
While praising much of the national effort, Ramaphosa paralyzed parts of the population that have been attending mass gatherings such as parties, funerals, or visiting family without facings.
“Researchers and other scenario planners have presented us with models that project that South Africa may have between 40,000 and 50,000 deaths by the end of this year,” he said.
“We have to make it our most important task to prove that these forecasts are wrong.”
However, some of the restrictions that applied during the shutdown period in the country have continued to ease. Parks are now open for training but not parishes, while auctions are now allowed. Local taxis will be able to operate at 100% capacity, with long-distance taxis with a capacity of 70%, providing mask and cleanup protocols are maintained. Family visits are still prohibited at this time.