The National Command Council chaired by President Cyril Ramaphosa has extended the 21 day national lockdown by 2 (two) weeks. This was done in an effort to flatten the curve of Covid 19.
Effectively, the lockdown that was set to come to and end on next Thursday, the 16th of April will now end on the 30th of April 2020, provided he does not extend it again. He confirmed this while addressing the nation a little after 20:00 (SAST) from the Union Buildings.
While addressing the nation Ramaphosa conceded that it was still too early to update the country on the impact of the lockdown however, “sufficient evidence shows that the lockdown is working” and that measures taken by the South African government seems to be working.
Before breaking the news of the extension of the lockdown, he warned that ending the lockdown too soon could risk resurgence and it could render the meaningful gains meaningless. Being mindful of the impact of the lockdown on the country’s vulnerable people, he revealed that, in addition to existing economic measures, he, his deputy David Mabuza, cabinet ministers and premiers would be taking a 33% (a third of their salaries) pay cut.
This portion of their salaries would be donated to the solidarity fund. An amount of R 40 billion has been set aside for unemployed people to claim from the Unemployment Insurance Fund with telecommunications giant, Vodacom set to donate 20 000 cellphones.