South Africa has been shifted back to lockdown alert level one.
Providing an update on the country’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic in the last two weeks, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the Health Department will soon be rolling out vaccination certificates.
This is aimed at providing a secure and verifiable proof of a person’s vaccination status, and would be used to facilitate travel and access to establishments that require proof of the vaccination. The initial proposal to introduce vaccine passports garnered mixed reactions from labour unions and civil groups saying this is government’s way of indirectly forcing people to get the jab.
Among the other adjustments under lockdown level 1 are an adjusted curfew which will start at 12am to 4am, the maximum amount of people for indoor gatherings has been increased from 250 to 750 and outdoors from 500 to 2000. Funerals would now be able to accommodate 100 people instead of 50.
No outcome on UK Red list
The president also indicated he had “intervened” to have South Africa removed from the UK’s travel red list.
Ramaphosa says he raised the issue with British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. He says both of them agreed that decisions of this nature should be informed by science. But the UK has failed to move on its decision. Among the implications of a country being on the British Covid-19 red, is that the UK does not vaccinations from these nations. Vaccinated citizens therefore still ahve to quarantine at their own cost upon arrival in Britain.
Ramaphosa is hopeful there will be a positive outcome; this will only occur when a review of the red-list happens.