President Cyril Ramaphosa implemented travel bans with immediate effect after declaring the Covid-19 outbreak a national disaster.
Ramaphosa addressed the nation from the Union Buildings on government's plans to curb the spread of coronavirus in the country following an urgent Cabinet meeting on Sunday.
Ramaphosa announced that there are now 61 cases of the novel virus in the country, including local transmissions.
These are the key measures announced by the President in his address on Sunday evening:
- Coronavirus pandemic declared a national state of disaster.
- Schools will be closed on Wednesday 18 March until after the Easter weekend. The mid-year holidays will be made a week shorter to compensate for this.
- There will be a travel ban on foreign nationals from high risk countries, including Italy, US, China and Iran, with immediate effect.
- Visas from high risk countries will be cancelled.
- From Monday, 35 land ports will be shut down.
- Effective immediately, all non-essential travel for all spheres of government outside the country prohibited.
- Gatherings of more than 100 people will be prohibited.
- Government will cancel all mass celebrations planned for the upcoming national public holidays, including Human Rights Day.
- Visits to correctional services will be suspended for 30 days.
- South Africans discouraged from non-essential domestic travel on all transport modes.
- Government will make funding available to support the critical sectors affected by the virus.
- Plans to strengthen screening and testing measures at international airports.
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : 10 interventions announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa to curb Covid-19 spread