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New level 3 lockdown rules and the penalties for breaking them

| Legislation

President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation on Sunday night, stating that South Africa is confronted by the gravest crisis in the history of our democracy.

He said while South Africa has succeeded in delaying the spread of COVID-19, the storm is now upon us with 276,242 confirmed cases, a figure that is growing by over 12,000 new cases every day.

While the country will stay at alert level 3, the government will strengthen the enforcement of existing regulations and take certain additional measures.

One of these measures is stricter rules around the wearing of cloth masks, which will now be enforced through strengthened regulations.

Employers, shop owners, public transport operators, and owners of public buildings are now legally obliged to ensure that anyone entering their premises or vehicle must be wearing a mask.

The sale, dispensing, and distribution of alcohol have also been suspended with immediate effect and a curfew has been put in place between 21:00 and 04:00.

Some of the current level restrictions were relaxed, which apply to taxis, auctions, and public parks.

Taxis undertaking local trips will now be permitted to increase their capacity to 100%, while long-distance taxis will not be allowed to exceed 70% occupancy.

All auctions will be permitted subject to protocols similar to those that currently apply to agricultural auctions.

Parks will be open for exercise during the allowed hours, but not for any form of gathering.

The restrictions on family visits and other social activities remain in place as they present too much of a risk to permit at this stage, Ramaphosa said.

The table below provides an overview of the alert level 3 lockdown changes announced by Ramaphosa last night.

Sale of Alcohol
Old rule Sale of alcohol allowed between 09:00 and 17:00 from Monday to Thursday.
New rule Sale, dispensing, and distribution of alcohol prohibited.
Penalty A fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both.
Curfew
Old rule No curfew.
New rule Curfew between 21:00 and 04:00.
Penalty A fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both.
Wearing of Masks
Old rule Wearing of masks encouraged.
New rule Employers, shop owners, managers, and public transport operators now legally obliged to ensure that anyone entering their premises or vehicle must be wearing a mask.
Penalty A fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both.
Taxis
Old rule Taxis were not allowed to exceed 70% occupancy.
New rule Taxis undertaking local trips are now permitted to increase their capacity to 100%, while long-distance taxis will not be allowed to exceed 70% occupancy.
Penalty A fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both.
Auctions
Old rule Only selected auctions were permitted.
New rule All auctions now permitted.
Penalty
Parks
Old rule Closed.
New rule Parks now open for exercise, but not for any form of gathering.
Penalty A fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both.
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