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Cyril Ramaphosa speaks during a televised speech in Pretoria

South Africa's President Ramaphosa Eases National Lockdown to Final Level

President Ramaphosa has eased South Africa's lockdown with calls for social and economic activities to resume.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that South Africa will be moving to level one of lockdown. The announcement follows after six months of lockdown for South Africa which badly affected the economy due to strict regulations that limited social gatherings. Ramaphosa addressed the nation through a live television broadcast on Wednesday night and detailed the new regulations under level one.


Regulations under level one include an expanded curfew for social gatherings. This means social gatherings will be allowed until midnight instead of ten at night. Social, religious, political and other gatherings will be permitted at 50 percent of the normal capacity of a venue, up to a maximum of 250 people indoors and 500 people outdoors. Venues for exercise, recreation and entertainment - such as gyms and theatres will also comply with 50 percent capacity. The sale of alcohol at restaurants is also permitted. International borders will be opened from the 1st of October. Lockdown level one regulations will commence on the 20th of September. Mask wearing still remains in place.

Read: In Photos: 'Covid' is Cape Town's New Informal Settlement for Those Displaced by the Pandemic

South Africa's coronavirus recovery rate is recorded at 89 percentand infection cases are dropping steadily. South Africans joyously welcomed the new lockdown level with hopes of not only having fun but entering into the job market





The announcement brings relief to many artists who were economically suffering. Black Coffee recently supported Durban artists who recently protested on one of South Africa's busiest highways because restrictions on social gatherings had put an end to live performances. The national Department of Arts and Culture reportedly provided COVID-19 packages for the arts sector but the public was dissatisfied with not only the amount but also the application process. AKA called out the department for its apparent devaluing of artists and publicly stated that he was unimpressed with the government's recovery package.

South Africa was one of the first African countries to respond immediately when the first cases of COVID-19 were recorded in the country. Ramaphosa declared a State of Disaster and announced that the country would enter into lockdown level five on the 27th of March.

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Ikenna Nwagboso (BANKU MUSIC)

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