Cape Town – South Africa will move to adjusted level 1 lockdown at midnight on Thursday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said.
“The current trends and the progression of the pandemic means that a number of restrictions in place can now be eased as per the recommendation of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Covid-19,” he said in a televised address.
“Following the meetings of the National Coronavirus Command Council and the President’s Co-ordinating Committee, Cabinet has decided to move South Africa from adjusted level 2 to adjusted alert level 1 from midnight tonight.”
– Non-essential establishments like restaurants and bars and fitness centres will need to close by 11pm to allow their employees and patrons to travel home before the start of the curfew.
– The maximum number of people permitted to attend meetings indoors will increase from 250 to 750 and the maximum number of people permitted to attend meetings outdoors will increase from 500 to 2 000.
Ramaphosa said the South African Covid-19 Modelling Consortium and the Department of Health had confirmed that the country had emerged from the third wave.
“This wave, which was driven by the Delta variant, was far more severe than the previous two waves. The third wave lasted 130 days and was about two weeks longer than each of the earlier waves,” Ramaphosa said.
“At the peak of the third wave we were recording around 20 000 new cases each day. Now, in the last seven days, the average number of new cases was at around 1 800.”
On the question of vaccinations, Ramaphosa said over 8.6 million people had been fully vaccinated.
South Africa reported 1 678 new Covid-19 cases and 101 deaths on Thursday, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) said.