South Africa could move to level 3 lockdown by June

President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation on Wednesday night.
President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation on Wednesday night.
Image: SIMPHIWE NKWALI/Sunday Times

President Cyril Ramaphosa's announcement that government plans to ease lockdown restrictions so that most of the country can enter into level 3 from the end of May has been met with mixed reactions from South Africans.

He said that those areas with widespread and uncontrolled infections of the coronavirus would likely remain on level 4.

The decision on which areas would be moved to different levels would be done in consultation with various officials.

Ramaphosa said there would be changes to the existing regulations for level 4 of lockdown, mentioning reducing the restrictions about exercise.

On Twitter, the hashtag #Level3Lockdown saw thousands expressing their views. Here's a glimpse of what people had to say:

Here's what level 3 lockdown will look like for SA come month end.

Ramaphosa warned of the dangers of lifting lockdown regulations too quickly, saying should measures be lifted too quickly, it would counteract the efforts made so far.

He highlighted the success of the lockdown, saying it gave the government and health officials a chance to “delay the spread of the virus and prevent a huge surge of infections”.

He said the measures provided the time to strengthen the capacity of the health system, allowing for the acquisition of 25,000 additional beds needed in quarantine facilities and the production of personal protective equipment (PPE).

The president said the death toll in SA is now at 219. He said it is important to remember that we are dealing with human lives, reminding South Africans that each person that has died had a family, dependants, friends and colleagues.