COGTA releases Level 1 Regulations – Awaiting clarity on list of ‘allowed’ countries

The Ministry of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs has promulgated new Lockdown Level 1 Regulations. Attached are the Regulations.

Contained within the Government Gazette no. 43725, published 18 September, are the following regulations pertaining to gatherings and the partial reopening of borders:

Gatherings:

  • All attendees at a gathering must wear a face mask, adhere to all health protocols, and maintain at least 1,5 metres social distancing.
  • The certificate of occupancy stating the maximum number of persons a facility can hold must be displayed at the facility (both outdoor and indoor).
  • Social events, conferences, meetings, and recreation (e.g. cinemas, theatres, concerts and live performances): gatherings at indoor facilities must be limited to 250 people or less; and 500 people or less at outdoor facilities; provided no more than 50% of the capacity of the venue is used, with observance of at least 1,5 metres social distancing.
  • Casinos: gatherings are allowed, subject to the limitation of not more than 50% of the capacity of the venue, with observance of at least 1,5 metres social distancing.
  • Gyms, fitness centres and swimming pools: gatherings are allowed, subject to the limitation of not more than 50% of the capacity of the venue.
  • Sports grounds and fields; beaches and public parks; and museums, galleries, libraries, and archives: gatherings are allowed subject to strict adherence to health protocols and social distancing measures.
  • Restaurants: gatherings are allowed subject to the curfew, number of persons, health protocols and social distancing measures.
  • Bars, taverns, shebeens, and similar establishments: gatherings are allowed, subject to the limitation of not more than 50% of the capacity of the venue, with observance of at least 1,5 metres social distancing. Night clubs are closed to the public.
  • Hotels, lodges, bed and breakfasts, timeshare facilities, resorts and guesthouses: gatherings are allowed, subject to the limitation of not more than 50% of the capacity of the venue, with observance of at least 1,5 metres social distancing.

Partial reopening of borders:

  • The 18 land borders which were partially operational during the previous lockdown levels will be fully operational (i.e. allow passage of South Africans and permitted foreign nationals). The 35 land borders that were closed during the previous lockdown levels will remain closed.
  • All commercial seaports will be opened for the transport of goods and crew, but will remain closed to passengers.
  • From 1 October 2020, all travellers from the African continent and from countries outside the African continent with a low rate of COVID-19 infection and transmission will be permitted to enter South Africa.
  • All arrivals to South Africa will be required to present a valid certificate of a negative COVID-19 test, obtained not more than 72 hours (3 days) before the date of travel. Failure to present proof of a negative test will require the traveller to quarantine at their own cost. All travellers will be screened on arrival and anyone presenting symptoms will be required to remain in quarantine until a repeat COVID-19 test is conducted. All travellers will be asked to download the COVID Alert South Africa mobile app.
  • Travel may be restricted to and from certain countries that have high infection and transmission rates. International business travel from those countries deemed ‘high-risk’ may be allowed with approval from Home Affairs.
  • The list of permitted and prohibited countries will be based on the latest scientific data and updated accordingly. NOTE: The Ministers concerned are currently in consultations regarding this list with the aim to publish it before 1 October.
  • Johannesburg’s OR Tambo, Durban’s King Shaka and Cape Town International Airports are the only airports that will allow international air travel to arrive or depart.
  • South African missions abroad will open for visa applications and all long-term visas will be reinstated.

Other regulations to note:

  • Face masks are required in public places, except when undertaking vigorous exercise.
  • Domestic travel and transport regulations will remain the same.
  • The national curfew is between midnight and 04h00.
  • The sale of liquor for off-site consumption is permitted from 09h00 to 17h00 from Mondays to Friday, excluding weekends and public holidays. On-site consumption is permitted, subject to strict adherence to the curfew.