- On the eve of the 21-day national lockdown President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on SA to engage in a National Day of Prayer
- The president says that this period will truly test the nation as it fights the continued spread of the coronavirus
- Citizens were urged to display the South African flag as a part of social solidarity
At midnight on Thursday South Africa will enter a 21-day lockdown to attempt to limit the potentially devastating impact of the coronavirus.
South Africans were called to stand together and take action as one united, patriotic nation in solidarity with all those who have been affected by the outbreak:
“These are challenging times. We are traversing a path we have never travelled before. There are many amongst us who are fearful, uncertain and vulnerable. I call on our people to offer a prayer and a thought for the protection and healing of our land and its people from this disease."
Ramaphosa noted the resilience displayed by citizens during this difficult time for the country:
“Over the past two weeks, South Africans from all walks of life have demonstrated their resilience by complying with the restrictions that have been placed on their lives. Because we are in a state of national lockdown our prayers must be offered from our hearts and in our homes."
Ramaphosa called on everyone, irrespective of individual religious beliefs, to observe the moment:
“I call on all our people, whether they are religious or not, wherever they are, on Thursday the 26th of March to observe a moment of silence in a show of social solidarity. In observing this National Day of Prayer we also want to send a message of hope to our brave and patriotic health care workers who are on the frontline and helping to save lives, with our emergency personnel, police, traffic officers and military, and with all those who are working tirelessly to keep us safe, healthy and alive."
The president says that the impact of the lockdown will be felt by countless South Africans:
“The coming weeks will sorely test our resolve and patience. For millions of South Africans for whom faith is a source of hope and courage, this difficult time must strengthen and unite us as never before.”
Briefly.co.za reported that the lockdown was put into place to attempt to limit continued increases in infections, aiming to limit the possibility of the healthcare sector being overwhelmed.
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