Some COVID restrictions may be permanent –  as pandemic ending unkown

Some COVID restrictions may be permanent – as pandemic ending unkown

John Steenhuisen has called remaining Covid-19 restrictions ‘unjust’, as government tries to permanently legislate restrictions and experts are unsure as to the end of the pandemic

What began as a three-week-long lockdown due to the Covid-19 epidemic in March 2022 with the institution of the State of Disaster has had multiple extensions.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has been empowered by the Disaster Management Act. However, 15 March would be the beginning of life without the lockdown.

High-level meetings for final Covid-19 “family meeting”

Much like previous extension considerations or adjustment to lockdown levels, consultations needed to be held between cabinet and the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), according to a report by the Sunday Times.

Health Minister Joe Phaahla said it was a balancing act between safeguarding and respecting individual rights with the protection of society to ensure the end of the lockdown.

Covid-19 restrictions could remain after the lockdown ended

The country was currently in adjusted lockdown level one that placed mask-wearing, sanitising, social distancing and the restrictions of gathering as cardinal weapons in the fight against the pandemic.

During the national health department’s weekly Friday briefing, Health Minister Joe Phaahla said they were hard at work to formulate new regulations to replace the State of Disaster.

Steenhuisen calls Covid-19 restriction unjust

While the government does not have unilateral control over State of Disaster extensions, they do have more power than their critics would deem necessary. One proponent of the anti-lockdown brigade was the DA who Steenhuisen lambasted the government’s attempts to permanently legislate the restrictions.

Although he has no medical qualifications, Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen made broad-reaching claims that Covid-19 is no longer a greater threat.

“It is time to focus all of our energies on regaining and transcending what has been lost. The epidemic phase is over. The only state of disaster the country is in is the self-imposed one caused by ongoing restrictions which do more harm than good,”

John Steenhuisen

Abdool Karim says Covid-19 does not end with lockdown

Infectious diseases epidemiologist Professor Salim Abdool Karim, former NCCC chair, told the South African on Friday that cases and deaths in South Africa have dropped to similarly low levels the country experienced after each of the previous waves

He said the mildness of the omicron wave, its low death toll and the fact that it is rapidly disappearing, has created the widespread impression that the Covid-19 is over.

“Several countries are removing all restrictions. This is reinforcing the perspective that Covid-19 is ending. I don’t know and no-one knows when the pandemic will end”. But there are some interesting issues to consider that provide some clues to that answer,”

Professor Salim Abdool Karim

»Some COVID restrictions may be permanent – as pandemic ending unkown«

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