South Africa remains on advanced level 3 of the COVID-19 lockdown, but with additional restrictions.
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced this in his address to the nation on Monday night.
A total of 20 land border posts will be closed until 15 February.
“One of the challenges that we have as the festive season draws to a close is the huge congestion at many of our land border posts. This has exposed many people to infection as they wait to be processed and it has been difficult to ensure that the health requirements for entry into South Africa are met, with many people arriving without proof of COVID-19 tests,” the president said.
“To reduce congestion and the high risk of transmission, Cabinet has decided that the 20 land ports of entry that are currently open will be closed until the 15th of February for general entry and departure.”
Ramaphosa said the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), the President’s Coordinating Council (PCC) and Cabinet recommended that the curfew be lifted an hour earlier at 5am.
But alcohol sale and many events remain banner.
“The sale of alcohol from retail outlets and the on-site consumption of alcohol is still not be permitted. Health services in several parts of the country reported that the prohibition of alcohol sale had significantly reduced the number of trauma cases seen in our hospitals over the New Year period.
It is vital that we continue to protect our health services at this crucial time,” the president said.
While he also reminded the public to keep wearing face masks, he said all beaches, dams, lakes, rivers, public parks and public swimming pools in hotspot areas will be closed to the public.
He said given the risk of widespread transmission, most indoor and outdoor gatherings will not be permitted.
“This includes social gatherings, religious gatherings, political events, traditional council meetings and gatherings at sports grounds,” he said however the restrictions doesn’t includes gatherings in the following places.
“As before, this does not include funerals and other limited exceptions as detailed in the regulations, such as restaurants, museums and gyms. Funerals may not be attended by more than 50 people, and there needs to be social distancing, hand sanitising and mask wearing," said Ramaphosa.