Johannesburg - The Democratic Nursing Organisation of SA (Denosa) has welcomed the stricter level 4 restrictions announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa to try to contain the runaway spread of Covid-19 across the country.
In his address on Sunday night, Ramaphosa announced a fresh ban on alcohol, a tightened curfew, early school closures and a restriction on gatherings as new Covid-19 infections spike.
Denosa said it was hopeful the measures set to remain in place for a fortnight before a review would slow down the pandemic.
Its spokesperson Sibongiseni Delihlazo said in an interview with news channel eNCA: “What has been clear though is that all the non-pharmaceutical interventions which were put in place and the policing thereof have proven not to be effective.
“Stricter restrictions, it would appear, would be the only option to the problem at hand.
“We do hope that there will be positive outcomes from this intervention – as tight as it is. We know how, economically, it is straining many households but in a case like we are in, where non-pharmaceutical interventions have not worked we believe that this was the only way to go,” Delihlazo said.
Denosa, however, said it was disappointed by the snail’s pace of the government’s national vaccination programme against Covid-19.
“We would have hoped that the vaccination programme in the country would have been ramped up to at least improve the immunity of the community. The slow pace thereof has been very disappointing and that leaves us with one option and that is to keep on adjusting the alert levels in the country,” Delihlazo added.
Ramaphosa’s announcement followed meetings of the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), the President’s Coordinating Council and Cabinet.
For two weeks starting from Monday until July 11, all indoor and outdoors gatherings – be they political, cultural, social and religious – will be prohibited, while attendance at funerals and cremations will be limited to 50 people.
The hours of the existing daily curfew will be extended to run from 9pm until 4am and all non-essential establishments will need to close by 8pm. The closure of schools and other educational institutions for their winter break will be brought forward to start from Wednesday, with all schools expected to be closed by Friday.
Travel in and out of Gauteng, the province hardest-hit by the virus, is prohibited for leisure purposes but business-related travel will be allowed.
Ramaphosa said the Delta variant of Covid-19, first detected in India at the end of March, was driving the increase in infections in South Africa’s third wave and was thought to be twice as contagious.
This variant has now been detected in 85 countries around the world.