- Following President Cyril Ramaphosa's announcement of a 21-day lockdown, many questions have been raised
- A popular one is who will be allowed to continue working during this trying time
- Briefly.co.za explores Minister Ebrahim Patel's guidelines provided thus far
Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition Ebrahim Patel gave South Africans some insight into hows things are expected to work during the impending 21-day lockdown.
Detailing which citizens will be exempt from staying at home during this period, Patel explained that only essential service providers will be permitted.
Grocery stores, supermarkets and spaza shops will remain open during the lockdown, but the minister called on people to limit trips to only those for purchasing food and basic goods.
Businesses essential for the production and distribution of these essential items will also be allowed to operate during the lockdown, with companies required to implement necessary protocols to ensure hygiene and social distancing.
Other essential staff members are currently being looked at for inclusion in the full gazetted list, which is expected to be released soon:
- Those responsible for the essential care of the elderly and sick including home-care and old-age homes
- Essential private security services for the protection of property and persons
- Essential back-office services to enable salary and human resource departments to ensure smooth salary payments
- Essential animal welfare and emergency veterinary services
- Those who assist in transporting food and other essentials to people's homes, including online retail
- Key maintenance systems required at workplaces to avoid serious damage to economic assets, where the interruption of that service will destroy critical working areas, factories or machinery
- Members of Parliament, provincial legislatures, municipal councils and their core staff, as well as government departments and public entities staff responsible to assist with implementation of the measures announced
- Members of the media and broadcasting services
- Transportation of fuel, food and basic goods supply trucks between SADC countries
Patel further encourages companies to allow employees who are able to work from home to do so in order to maintain as much economic activity as possible during this period:
"The sooner we slow the spread of the disease, the sooner we can return to normal life and business. While some of us may be exempt from the 'lockdown' because of the nature of our work, none of us are exempt from susceptibility of the virus"
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