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Not wearing masks in a public space is a criminal offence

Published Jul 15, 2020

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DURBAN – Harsher punishment is set to be implemented for South Africans caught not wearing masks in public spaces as per Covid-19 lockdown regulations.

The wearing of masks have been made compulsory in a bid to curb the spread of Coronavirus.

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Following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s address to the nation on Sunday, members of the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) held a briefing on Monday. At the briefinng Minister of Justice and Correctional Services Ronald Lamola said that not wearing a mask in a public space will be a criminal offence. However, the type of offence has not been elaborated on.

Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma stated: “Our hope is that no one will ever be fined for not wearing a mask. Our hope is that no one will ever get a criminal record for not wearing a mask. Because everyone will wear a mask … We should not be worried too much about the fine. We should be worried about wearing the mask.”

If a member of the public does not wear a mask, he or she would be prohibited from doing the following:-

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• Be in any public space, open or otherwise.

• Enter or be in any premises, which includes government buildings and public places, such as banks or malls or places that provide goods or services.

• Use or operate public transport.

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