Regulations in the Western Cape will not be relaxed without this happening in the rest of the country.
So it said in the answering court documents that Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, submitted to the High Court in Cape Town.
She opposes an application from a group of restaurants led by Chefs Warehouse who, among other things, calls for the ban on alcohol to be lifted nationwide. If this is not possible, they ask that it happen at least in the Western Cape.
Alan Winde, Western Cape premier, had earlier said he would talk to the government to lift the liquor ban in the Western Cape.
He says the province’s health system currently has the capacity to deal with patients with Covid-19 and alcohol-related trauma at the same time.
In the court documents, however, Dlamini-Zuma says there are no grounds to relax regulations in certain provinces, while restrictions apply in other provinces.
“The regulations are intended to be applied in general to protect all South Africans fairly and equally across the country.”
Dlamini-Zuma further says that dealing with provinces differently causes difficult policy issues – something that falls outside the mandate of the court.
According to her, an analysis of the number of positive cases and the availability of health infrastructure and staff will determine the duration of the ban.
Adv. Theo Nel, who represents the applicants, believes Dlamini-Zuma’s remarks mean that the Western Cape will have to wait for other provinces to bring Covid-19 under control before regulations are relaxed.
Dlamini-Zuma said in the Government Gazette of May 28 that according to the government’s differentiated approach, levels of restriction could differ between provinces, districts and metro areas.
“The level determined to be applied at a national level applies to all provinces, metro areas and districts, unless a different level is determined otherwise,” reads the Government Gazette.
However, Tyrone Seale, acting spokesperson for the presidency, and Lungi Mtshali, spokesperson for the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, could not clarify on Sunday how the levels of restrictions on provinces and districts are now working.
Prof. When asked, Shabir Madhi, a dust specialist, expressed his surprise at Dlamini-Zuma’s turnaround.
He says regulations can currently be relaxed in the Western Cape without overwhelming the health system. According to him, there is a clear decrease in infections in this province, although infections can flare up again.
“However, if new hotspots in the Western Cape are detected early enough and brought under control, it will not lead to a second peak,”Madhi.
Geordin Hill-Lewis, DA spokesperson on finance, believes Dlamini-Zuma is misleading in her court documents because the regulations clearly provide for regulations to be relaxed in certain provinces.
“Actually, there should be no restriction. “If there is to be a restriction, parts of the country that have moved past the peak and can handle Covid-19 better should be allowed to take a different approach,” he said.
According to him, it will have an unnecessary and devastating impact on the Western Cape economy if regulations are only relaxed if Covid-19 infections in other provinces decrease.
“The Western Cape is suffering especially due to the restriction because tourism forms a large part of its economy. It is ironic that the province that best manages Covid-19 will be severely punished by the restriction. “
Political analyst Theo Venter says Gauteng is actually already past the peak. According to him, Covid-19 is not going to peak in the same way in every province.
“Therefore, and to limit economic damage, the government must allow flexibility.”
According to Venter, the government wants to enforce the same level of restraint throughout the country because it does not have the ability to control the movement of people between provinces and districts.