- The United Kingdom has gone into a fresh lockdown to stop the continued increase in Covid-19 infections
- PM Boris Johnson on Monday night, January 4 announced the new restrictions which he said take off in 24 hours and are expected to last until March
- Johnson said the move became necessary to prevent UK's health system from being overwhelmed
The government of the United Kingdom has ordered a third national lockdown in the European country. The Independent UK reports that Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed the fresh lockdown order in a national address.
According to the national daily, the lockdown begins immediately with citizens getting just 24 hours to prepare for the fresh restrictions. The latest lockdown will last till March, the newspaper reported on Monday, January 4.
PM Johnson hopes that the administration of the Covid-19 vaccine could provide a way out of the lockdown by mid-February. In line with the latest restrictions, all schools will shut down on Tuesday, January 5 for the compulsory 'stay at home' order.
Johnson said the new lockdown was to prevent the UK's health system from being overwhelmed due to the increase in infections caused by the new coronavirus variant in the country.
"We now have a new variant of the virus. It has been both frustrating and alarming to see the speed with which the new variant is spreading. As I speak to you tonight, our hospitals are under more pressure from Covid than at any time since the start of the pandemic."
Briefly.co.za recently reported on lockdown news closer to home. On Monday, it was announced that the government is set to appeal the Western Cape High Court judgment that the ban on tobacco trade during lockdown was unnecessary.
British American Tobacco SA had brought the case forward after tobacco products were banned. This ban had only been lifted in August when South Africa was shifted to Level 2 of the lockdown.
The case had only been heard after the restrictions were eased and the judgment had been delivered in December.
The judgement had found that the regulation that Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma had used to effect the ban couldn't stand up to scrutiny, was unnecessary and didn't serve the intended objectives.
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