A bartender wearing a face mask works while people drink and socialise in a pub. Picture: Reuters
A bartender wearing a face mask works while people drink and socialise in a pub. Picture: Reuters

Concerns about hospitality, entertainment industry lockdown compliance as fears build of Covid-19 infection surge

By Liam Ngobeni Time of article published Oct 22, 2020

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Pretoria - The hospitality and entertainment industry are major concerns in terms of compliance with lockdown regulations as fears of a resurgence of Covid-19 in early December intensify.

Acting Health MEC Jacob Mamabolo also said that Tshwane was still a major concern.

He said he had been doing oversight visits to the two main storage facilities in the province for personal protective equipment to ensure that health workers were ready for the second wave of infections.

Malls, restaurants and pubs, according to Mamabolo, were among major super spreaders, which would be cracked down on as the year ends. He said the second wave was expected in the first week of December.

“We know that, in the afternoon and evening, they (patrons and restaurant staff) tend to relax and lower their guards. They must know we will be focusing on them, and we are definitely going to crack the whip on malls, restaurants and other areas of entertainment.

“We will be looking at the hospitality cluster as a priority, and other places of high concentration.

“Some restaurants want money so badly they also don’t minimise the numbers in their premises, and there is little to no compliance. Some don’t have sanitisers at all, there is no body temperature checking and that is a big concern they must know that we will be focusing on them, including after hours, because that is where they slack the most.”

He said in areas where there was rampant and minimal compliance, they could be shut down. “In townships such as Atteridgeville, Mamelodi, Soshanguve and Eersterust we are having the same issues and they too must know we have our eyes on the situation."

In a bid to strengthen efforts, Mamabolo said a workshop had been set up with stakeholders as well as the Cuban cohort of medical practitioners to moot a strategy to avoid a resurgence.

“Funerals remain a big area of concern; we are also seeing that general levels of alertness are very worrying and the workshop will be looking at these areas

“We are in the 300 to 400 range of infections per day. If not drastically reduced it can jump, which is a big risk.

“We are making a plea to the people in the hot spots to observe the rules regulating Covid-19, even when going to taxi ranks where there is a high number of people.”

Mamabolo was tight-lipped on the possibility of the province going back to a higher level of the lockdown.

Pretoria News

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