Restrictions and travel bans will not prevent the spread of Omicron variant, says Ramaphosa
The prohibition of travel is not informed by science and will not be effective in preventing the spread of the Omicron Variant, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Sunday.
Ramaphosa addressed the nation on Sunday night over the country’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic after meetings of the National Coronavirus Command Council, the President’s Co-ordinating Council and Cabinet.
A number of countries including the UK and in the EU have imposed a travel ban on South Africa after the discovery of Omicron earlier this week.
However, Ramaphosa, Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla and other scientists said this decision was premature.
“These restrictions are unjustified and unfairly discriminate against our country and our Southern African sister countries,” said Ramaphosa, adding that the prohibition of travel will not be effective in preventing the spread of this variant.
Ramaphosa has urged citizens to get vaccinated and to continue to wear face masks and to sanitise.
“Vaccination is by far the most important way to protect yourself and those around you against the army crown variant to reduce the impact of the fourth wave and to help restore the social freedoms we all yearn for. Vaccination is vital to the return of our economy to full operation and the resumption of travel into the recovery of vulnerable sectors that tourism and hospitality,” said Ramaphosa.
A few months ago, Ramaphosa moved the country to level 1 lockdown.
In other news – SA Lockdown: South Africa remains on Alert Level 1
South Africa remains on lockdown Alert Level 1. President Cyril Ramaphosa made the announcement on Sunday evening.
The president assured South Africans, “we will implement our national resurgence plan to ensure that hospitals and other medical facilities are ready for the fourth wave. Learn more