Gauteng To Impose Impartial Lockdown Regulations

However, as the provincial government contemplates its next move, there are calls for the economy to be opened further, especially when it comes to the sale of cigarettes.

Gauteng To Impose Impartial Lockdown Regulations-SurgeZirc SA
Gauteng Premier David Makhura/Photo File:Screengrabs

The Gauteng government said that they did not plan stricter lockdown rules for the province, as they prepare to hear go-ahead from NCCC.

The provincial executive committee met over the weekend but spokesperson Thabo Masebe said that it did not discuss the prospect of Gauteng moving back to a hard lockdown.

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Gauteng is fast approaching the Western Cape, which currently has the highest number of infections.

However, as the provincial government contemplates its next move, there are calls for the economy to be opened further, especially when it comes to the sale of cigarettes.

The ban on the sale of cigarettes has been met with anger from many South Africans, with government losing billions in revenue a loss it can ill afford.

And while government is losing money, so are retailers with an estimated 11 million smokers and vapers affected.

An open letter saw a number of chains including Spar, Sasta, JJ Cale and tobacco producers appealing to government to open up sales.

They said that an estimated R3.5 billion had been lost, which could have built two new hospitals or 54 new schools among other projects.

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But weekend reports also quoted Gauteng Health MEC Bandile Masuku calling for a harder lockdown.

There has been no indication on whether this has been approved by the national government or whether this will affect business.

Regardless, two major legal initiatives are set to continue and cigarette companies said that they were not backing down.

 

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