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You can travel between provinces for the next 7 days, but only for work or to return home

There were 146 roadblocks around the country on Thursday as police enforced the rules of law during the Covid-19 lockdown.
There were 146 roadblocks around the country on Thursday as police enforced the rules of law during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Image: Thapelo Morebudi

South Africans can travel between provinces, but only if it is for work, and it has to be a once-off trip.

"You cannot move backwards and forwards. It is one-way," transport department director-general said Alec Moemi on Friday.

He was speaking at a briefing after transport minister Fikile Mbalula outlined the new transport rules under level 4 of the country's Covid-19 lockdown.

Mbalula said travel between provinces, metropolitan areas and districts would remain prohibited, but there would be concessions made for workers who "have to commute to and from work on a daily basis, attendance of funerals and transportation of mortal remains".

Cogta minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma on Wednesday announced regulations about the once-off movement of persons.

Mbalula said there was a "once-off special dispensation" for those who weren't at their homes before the lockdown to return home.

"Those people are now permitted to travel between May 1 and May 7 in line with the regulations.

"Long distance bus and taxi operators are allowed to undertake long distance travel during this window period. Full compliance with the 70% passenger capacity, wearing of masks by all passengers and sanitisation of vehicles at the completion of each journey is a mandatory requirement," said Mbalula.

He warned against people taking advantage of the rules.

Mbalula said: "You are allowed from today until May 7 to rearrange your setup, not to visit friends and all of that. If you are a student, or a doctor, whatever that you are, and when the lockdown was announced you were caught up somewhere and you've been disciplined and adhering to the law - and you did not even attempt to travel at night,you have stayed true to the regulations - you are now allowed, as a law-abiding citizen, to go back to where you belong, to go back to work or whatever you were doing."

Earlier in the day, SAPS spokesperson Brig Vish Naidoo said some people had complained that officers at roadblocks were turning them back.

“We are getting complaints. It’s the first day so we are likely to experience problems. The communication was sent to our members. The grey area was when they should start moving.

“There is no need for a permit. We apologise for the inconveniences,” Naidoo told Radio 702.

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