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'We're desperate, Minister! Follow up on your memo about dropping COVID rules!'

21 June 2022 7:17 PM
Tags:
Tourism
The Money Show
Bruce Whitfield
Health Department
Fedhasa
Joe Phaahla
Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa
Face Masks
Rosemary Anderson
Covid regulations

Bruce Whitfield interviews Fedhasa chair Rosemary Anderson about a letter apparently from the Health Minister about relaxed rules.
@ microgen/123rf.com

Reports are circulating that government is set to ease or drop remaining COVID-19 regulations.

This followed the appearance on social media of what appears to be a memo to the Health Department from Minister Joe Phaahla.

The Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa (Fedhasa) was quick to issue a press release calling on the Minister to adopt the recommendations contained swiftly.

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The letter refers to the May 4th promulgation of the relevant amended limited health regulations as "a temporary stop-gap measure" to help South Africa deal with the impending fifth wave of COVID.

Minister Phaahla highlights mask-wearing at indoor public gatherings, restrictions on gatherings and travel requirements to enter South Africa.

He says it was proposed at a meeting with the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCC) on Monday that these regulations are no longer necessary.

"These recommendations will be discussed with the Cabinet in the next 48-72 hours", he concludes.

Bruce Whitfield interviews Fedhasa Chairperson Rosemary Anderson.

Anderson says the hospitality industry is "extremely desperate" to see the last COVID restrictions lifted.

There are no big events that are going to come to South Africa if they know they can only get 50% occupancy, whether it's a big stadium or a big music event... All the big conferences that were going to happen here are not happening because they know only 50% of capacity can be used...

Rosemary Anderson, Chair - Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa

We're very happy to see that the Minister of Health yesterday put out an internal notice recommending the removal of masks, removal of the 50% and also no restrictions to enter South Africa. We're really crossing fingers...

Rosemary Anderson, Chair - Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa

Does Anderson think this would immediately reflect in improved tourism numbers?

She says the 50% capacity limit has a huge effect on businesses in general.

I agree that the masks might not have any impact at all, but that 50% [change] will really make a massive difference.

Rosemary Anderson, Chair - Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa

Added to lifting COVID restrictions are other important steps that need to be taken she says, like implementing an e-visa system.

Digital nomads... There are so many people who want to come and live in South Africa being paid in pounds or dollars, so they're not taking any jobs and they'll be spending lots of money here... Proactively we could be doing so much about that....

Rosemary Anderson, Chair - Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa

Listen to the important conversation on The Money Show:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : 'We're desperate, Minister! Follow up on your memo about dropping COVID rules!'




21 June 2022 7:17 PM
Tags:
Tourism
The Money Show
Bruce Whitfield
Health Department
Fedhasa
Joe Phaahla
Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa
Face Masks
Rosemary Anderson
Covid regulations

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