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South Africa’s last remaining COVID-19 regulations, ending the mask mandate, limitations on gatherings and checks on travellers coming into the country have been scrapped.
Minister of Health, Joe Phaahla has signed a document repealing sections 16A, 16B and 16C of the Regulations Relating to the Surveillance and the Control of Notifiable Medical Conditions made under the National Health Act.
This means that:
The minister said that today is a very historic day as we have reached a turning point since the outbreak of COVID-19 in the world and in the country. Having monitored the positive direction for more than three weeks cabinet came to the conclusion that the peak infection was a limited 5th wave driven by subvariants and not a new variant of concern was dissipating and that there was no longer an imminent risk.
The minister added that while the wearing of masks is no longer enforced by government, individual public spaces such as old age homes, schools, hospitals, hotels, restaurants etc in their own capacity are still able to and within their right to require any member from the public to wear a mask before entering their premises.
The public is also encouraged to continue to wear masks, especially so when they are sick as the wearing of masks has proven effective in combating the spread of other diseases.
To view the minister’s address click here and to read the minister’s statement, click here