Political Parties Weigh In On Move To Level 3
Political parties show mixed reactions to the level 3 lockdown imposed across South Africa, on Monday 28 December.
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the country would be returning to a level 3 lockdown which has been adjusted since the first time this level was announced. This comes after South Africa experienced a big surge in Covid-19 cases since the second wave of the coronavirus commenced in the country.
Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen says that lockdowns and bans should not be the only thing used to curb the spread of the virus. Instead more should be done to obtain vaccines. He says that the vaccine is the most important solution to gaining stability in the country's economy.
"Lockdowns and bans may have short-term efficacy but they have a hugely devastating impact long-term on the economy," says Steenhuisen.
He says that the South African government must do whatever they can to get Covid-19 vaccines.
Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) spokesperson Vuyani Pambo says that the party welcomes the move to level 3 lockdown and feels that this should have been done earlier in December so that the country could have been opening up and easing regulations by now.
"What is also to blame for these infections that have now reached one million is because the government has failed to enforce regulations and take decisive action." Pambo said.
Pambo questions why hospitals have not been built and more hospital equipment has not been secured if the government knew that predictions said that approximately 85% of South Africans could have the virus by the end of this year.
He says that although the party agrees with the alcohol bans, the government must meet with tavern owners to discuss how their losses can be cushioned.
The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) spokesperson Narend Singh says that although the measures put in place for the level 3 lockdown are drastic the party believes that it is necessary to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Singh says that the president's statement about those who will be left jobless receiving a 'safety net' was not elaborated on enough as these people will be suffering a lot of psychological and financial trauma.
The United Democratic Movement (UDM) leader Bantu Holomisa supports the decision to move to the level 3 lockdown as he says that the regulations have previously not been enforced properly and people have become careless, costing the lives of others.
Holomisa says the party is disappointed by the delay in the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine and that South Africa should be doing more to secure the vaccines directly from countries who are manufacturing it. He feels more money should be set aside to secure the vaccines.
The Freedom Front Plus leader Pieter Groeneweld says that the adjusted level 3 regulations have brought about uncertainty and he says that the move from a level 1 to a level 3 lockdown shows that the government was not prepared for the pandemic.
"We are in favour of a hotspot identification [and] a specific risk analysis of specific areas and then you can then have certain restrictions in those areas... but there should be no restrictions or regulations that can be detrimental to the economy." says Groeneweld.
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