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Booze unbanned and beaches open as Ramaphosa eases level 3 lockdown

Matthew Savides Night news editor
President Cyril Ramaphosa. File picture.
President Cyril Ramaphosa. File picture.
Image: Jerome Delay via Reuters

SA will remain under lockdown level 3, but a number of the restrictions — including the ban on the sale of alcohol and the restrictions on worship — have been eased.

President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Monday night that a decline in the number of new cases meant the country could begin to ease some of the restrictions.

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced on February 1 2021 that SA will remain on adjusted lockdown alert level 3 but he said that many restrictions will be lifted. These include the ban on the sale of alcohol, restrictions on faith-based gatherings and a shortening of the curfew. Ramaphosa also elaborated on SA's vaccine progress after the first batch arrived in the country.

Among the changes were:

  • Curfew has been shorted, and will now run from 11pm to 4am. Establishments that people use, whether for entertainment or otherwise, will be expected to close by 10pm to allow staff and customers to get home before the start of curfew;
  • Faith-based gatherings will be allowed, but only to a maximum of 50 people for indoor events and 100 for outdoors events;
  • Public places like beaches, dams, rivers, parks and public swimming pools will be reopened; and
  • Restrictions on the sales of alcohol will be eased, allowing licensed establishments to sell for off-site consumption from Monday to Thursday from 10am to 6pm, and licences establishment for on-site consumption any day of the week from 10am to 10pm.

“These changes have been made possible by the significant reduction in Covid-19 hospital admissions across all provinces, reducing the pressure on beds and hospital personnel,” said Ramaphosa.

This is a developing story.

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