Health Minister Joe Phaahla has repealed Regulations 16A, 16B and 16C of the regulations which set out the guidelines for dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. In short, this sees most of the pandemic-related rules South Africans had to follow fall away.
Members of the public are no longer required to wear face masks. Regulation 16A compelled people to wear masks indoors and when using public transport. This will now fall away after the minister repelled regulation 16A
Regulation 16B required proof of Covid-19 vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test to attend gatherings at venues like restaurants, sports events or concerts. These requirements will no longer be in practice. Gatherings will also not be limited to a specific number of people based on the capacity of a venue.
Regulation 16C dealt with rules requiring individuals wanting to enter the country. Previously to enter South Africa, individuals were required to produce proof of Covid-19 vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test. These rules will also cease to exist.
The Health Minister is expected to address the nation on Thursday to provide more information on other changes related to the management and surveillance of the Covid-19 pandemic in South Africa.
The South African hospitality industry was severely impacted by the pandemic as hotels shut their doors and venues were closed to limit the spread of the Covid-19 virus.
Rosemary Anderson from the Federated Hospitality Association of Southern Africa says the dropping of the Covid-19 regulations is good news. She however acknowledged that a lot of work needs to be done for the sector to recover. This as rules that restricted the number of people attending events negatively impacted the industry.
“It, unfortunately, damaged a lot of international business coming our way, events, conferences so now that that's gone we are going to go full out to try to redeem and reclaim what we've lost,” declared Anderson.