Ministers in the Security Cluster say public transport including minibus taxis, trains and passenger flights will come to a virtual halt when the 21-day lockdown takes effect at midnight tonight. They announced far-reaching measures at a media briefing in Pretoria on Wednesday to clamp down on the movement of people in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula says all train and air travel services will be stopped completely. Mbalula however says minibus taxis and other taxi services like Uber and Bolt will be allowed on the roads from five o’clock in the morning to nine and from four o’clock in the afternoon to eight o’clock at night if they carry essential workers.
He says: “A vehicle licensed to carry up to four people will only be permitted to load one person. A vehicle licensed to carry up to eight passengers will only be permitted to load a maximum of three passengers.”
“Limited bus operations will only be allowed for purposed of rendering essential services.”
“All cross-border road passenger movements will be prohibited,” adds Mbalula.
Deployment of SANDF members
Meanwhile, Minister of Defence Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has slammed what she calls the spreading of fake news on social media relating to the deployment of SANDF members across the country.
Mapisa-Nqakula clarified that no soldiers have been deployed yet and any visuals on social media of information that states otherwise are fake news.
“There is no deployment of soldiers currently in the streets of SA. You may have seen them moving in transit, you have not seen soldiers patrolling, manning roadblocks because in the first instance we are protecting South Africans against a virus. Our number of escalated and therefore we now have to come and support the police in enforcing the law by ensuring that everybody remains behind doors.”
Coronavirus cases in SA
Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize announced that the number of confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) cases have gone up to 709 cases on Wednesday morning.
The cases have increased by 155 from yesterday’s 554.
Source: SABC News
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