Being told to “stay at home” may seem self-explanatory but it is quite a vague command. It invites confusion which in turn leads to questions such as “Well, when am I allowed to leave the property?”, “What if I need something from the store?”, “Can I go see a movie but sit far away from everyone else?”, “Why can’t I take my dog for a walk? it’s not like I will walk in a group”, and “What if I run out of cigarettes?”.
To clarify, here’s what Police Minister Bheki Cele meant when he told the nation to “stay at home”.
The following places will be off-limits to the public for the duration of SA's national lockdown:
- Public Parks
- Flea markets
- Public swimming pools
- Private and public game reserves
- Holiday resorts
- Shopping malls (excluding grocery store and pharmacies at the stores)
This means that -
- Gatherings will be banned, except for funerals, which must be attended by no more than 50 people.
- Movement between provinces, metros and district areas are also banned and roadblocks will be set up on community, provincial and national roads to implement this.
- Despite what Health Minister Zweli Mkhize's said earlier on Wednesday, dog-walking and jogging are strictly prohibited during the lockdown period.
- Cross-border trips are prohibited during this period, with the exception of the transportation of essential goods and cargo.
- Citizens may only leave the house when purchasing essential goods such as groceries, medicine or fuel, when providing an essential service, collecting a social grant, or seeking emergency medical treatment.
- Any place normally open to the public where religious, cultural, sporting, entertainment, recreational, organisational or similar activities may take place will be closed.
- Individuals residing in a secure complex are allowed to walk around the property unaccompanied, but the use of shared spaces such as the swimming pool is prohibited.
- Those living in private houses with a garden are allowed to walk around, provided they stay within the property limits.
Note that if you leave your residence for reasons not listed above, you will be subject to a fine and a possible jail sentence of up to 6 months for breaching the lockdown regulations.
Read more on the restrictions of movement during South Africa's 21-day lockdown: https://buff.ly/39WCBrq