COGTA Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has confirmed that the National State of Disaster will be extended by another month, despite growing pressure to call time on the lockdown measures.

How much longer will the State of Disaster remain in place?

In a statement released on Wednesday afternoon, the COGTA department reasoned that South Africa still needs to use ‘non-pharmaceutical interventions’ to keep COVID-19 at bay. The rules will now be in place until Monday 15 November at the earliest. NDZ also confirmed that this backing comes with the approval of the Cabinet.

“The Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma has gazetted the extension of the National State of Disaster on Covid-19 until 15 November 2021, in terms of section 27(5)(c) of the Disaster Management Act, 2002 (Act No. 57 of 2002).”

“The decision to extend the state of national disaster follows consultations with relevant stakeholders and Cabinet approval. The extension takes into account the need to continue observing all non-pharmacetical interventions against Covid and increasing vaccinations as part of contingency measures being undertaken to mitigate against its impact.”

Is there a plan to end lockdown? Critics are unconvinced with Dlamini-Zuma statement

However, the decision to extend the State of Disaster has positively rankled Alan Winde. The Western Cape Premier has lashed out at Minister Dlamini-Zuma, suggesting that no-one in the national government has a plan to end lockdown.

Winde had earlier reached out to NDZ, requesting that she’d consider his five-point roadmap to gradually exit lockdown restrictions in the summer months. This plea, however, seems to have fallen on deaf ears.

“Minister Dlamini-Zuma has indicated that ongoing assessments by the National Coronavirus Command Council and Cabinet will determine the satisfaction of conditions for terminating or allowing the State of Disaster to lapse.”

“I’m not satisfied with this response, which is silent on the question of consultation on this decision, and which is important for reasons set out, silent on whether there is, in fact, a roadmap in place to terminate the disaster.”

“I am now extremely concerned that the National Government does not in fact have a plan for this to happen, with clear markers, based on expert advice.” | Alan Winde statement

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