The national state of disaster was initially set to lapse on 15 June 2020, the act however provided that it can be extended by the Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma by notice in the gazette for one month at a time before it lapses.
In a gazette released on Wednesday, cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma extended the state of disaster by an additional month which is until the 15th of November.
Dlamini-Zuma said that the extension takes under consideration the necessity to enhance the prevailing legislation and contingency arrangements undertaken by the organs of state to deal with the impact of the disaster.
“The extension takes into account the need to continue observing all non-pharmaceutical interventions against Covid-19 and increasing vaccinations as part of contingency measures being undertaken to mitigate against its impact,” said Dlamini-Zuma.
The government has relied on the regulations to introduce and provide effect to lockdown restrictions, which it has used to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. Even so, they have faced criticism for giving the national government wide-ranging powers over the lives of citizens, with few limits and little to no oversight from parliament.
Western Cape premier Alan Winde is one of the people who have called for the state of disaster’s end, requesting a consultation with President Cyril Ramaphosa and other provinces before any extension on the declaration of the national state of disaster is implemented,
Winde has also asked for transparency on the national government’s proposed roadmap out of the national state of disaster, which has not yet been made public or shared with provinces,
“It is only fair on our residents, and especially our job-creating businesses, that this clarity is provided. We cannot be in a state of disaster forever, and we need to have a clear plan for its termination. This will provide much-needed confidence to the economy, which remains under great pressure.”