Stay at home or face pos­si­ble jail time – Cele

Two Covid-19 pa­tients who failed to ad­here to quar­an­tine rules in KwaZulu-Na­tal ar­rested

Cape Times - - FRONT PAGE - SIVIWE FEKETHA

PO­LICE Min­is­ter Bheki Cele has warned South Africans to stay home or face pos­si­ble jail time as the SAPS and the SANDF move into com­mu­ni­ties to en­force the na­tional lock­down from mid­night.

This as two KwaZulu-Na­tal Covid-19 pa­tients who failed to ad­here to strict quar­an­tine rules were ar­rested.

The 21-day na­tional shut­down will see peo­ple be­ing forced to stay at home and most busi­nesses closed, as the coun­try es­ca­lates its mea­sures to con­tain the spread of Covid-19, with recorded cases in the coun­try yes­ter­day surg­ing to more than 700, with no deaths re­ported.

Cele and other se­cu­rity clus­ter min­is­ters out­lined a list of pro­hib­ited activities and op­er­a­tions in the next three weeks, ad­ding that peo­ple would be jailed for six months or fined – or both – if they trans­gressed.

Cele in­di­cated that re­li­gious, cul­tural, sport­ing, en­ter­tain­ment, recre­ational, ex­hi­bi­tion or­gan­i­sa­tional or re­lated activities were banned.

He also an­nounced a to­tal ban on al­co­hol sale and move­ment of al­co­hol, along with and non-es­sen­tial move­ment, ad­ding that all restau­rants and

“It is not a fairy tale to say the law will act very harsh on you. Bheki Cele Po­lice Min­is­ter

shop­ping cen­tres would be forced to close, with the ex­cep­tion of gro­cery stores and phar­ma­cies.

“There shall be no food at restau­rants. You buy food from these out­lets and go and cook at home, so there is no need to be on the road. There is no need to move around.

“There was a lit­tle bit of a story ear­lier that you can walk your dogs. There shall be no dogs that will be walked.

“The clus­ter met and dis­cussed, and we agreed that it does not en­hance the call made by the pres­i­dent,” Cele said.

“There shall be no move­ment of liquor from point A to point B.

“If we find liquor in your boot, that is il­le­gal. That is a crime, which means what you have at your home, you will con­sume there, not next door.

“To show that we are se­ri­ous, if you break these laws or reg­u­la­tions, you face six months (in jail) or a fine or both.”

He said the to­tal ban on al­co­hol would re­duce car ac­ci­dents and vi­o­lent, drunken brawls, and open up space in hos­pi­tals to ac­com­mo­date Covid-19 pa­tients when the in­fec­tions wors­ened.

He said the law was al­ready tak­ing its course on the two KZN pa­tients who had been charged.

“It is not a fairy tale to say the law will act very harsh on you. We hope we will work to­gether here,” he said.

The lock­down would also see beaches, pools, game re­serves and ho­tels closed, ex­cept where they were al­lowed to open due to the pres­ence of tourists.

De­fence Min­is­ter No­siviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said while sol­diers were

de­ployed to en­sure en­force­ment of the lock­down, this was not meant to sub­ject civil­ians to abuse and vi­o­lence.

“The na­tional lock­down is def­i­nitely not meant to pu­n­ish cit­i­zens by re­strict­ing their move­ments, but it is meant to con­tain and min­imise the spread of this virus.

“The Con­sti­tu­tion... man­dates the SANDF to de­fend and pro­tect the Repub­lic, its ter­ri­to­rial in­tegrity and its peo­ple in or­der to pre­serve life, health and prop­erty in emer­gency and hu­man­i­tar­ian re­lief op­er­a­tions,” Mapisa-Nqakula said.

Trans­port Min­is­ter Fik­ile Mbalula said all pas­sen­ger flights, rail ser­vices and cruise ships would shut down.

He said buses and minibus taxis would only be al­lowed to trans­port es­sen­tial service work­ers, with those banned from op­er­at­ing to be given fi­nan­cial re­lief.

As part of the re­lief mea­sures for small busi­nesses in dis­tress, taxi oper­a­tors would be granted a three-month pay­ment holiday for taxis fi­nanced by the Na­tional Taxi Fi­nance in­sti­tu­tion, while banks were also con­sid­er­ing fol­low­ing suit.

| HENK KRUGER African News Agency (ANA)

HUN­DREDS of shop­pers queue out­side Gi­ant Hy­per in Brack­en­fell to buy goods be­fore the na­tional lock­down from mid­night. Pres­i­dent Cyril Ram­pa­hosa an­nounced the lock­down on Mon­day as part of stop­ping the spread of Covid-19. See page 4

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