It’s a week into the national lockdown and the City of Cape Town wants clarity on who exactly is allowed to be out on the streets during this period.
Mayco Member JP Smith said that the city’s Public Emergency Communication Centre this past week received large volumes of calls from residents complaining about people not complying with the lockdown regulations.
Smith said that law enforcement officers arrested scores of people for serious transgressions of the regulations, including transporting large volumes of alcohol and dealing drugs.
He said that loosely termed lockdown regulations make for difficult enforcement.
Smith wants government to formulate better definitions around who’s allowed to be on the street and wants these movements to be limited.
“It is very difficult when you get to a person on the street and they’re saying I’m on my way to go and buy food. It’s easy when they have groceries with them, it’s evidence of the fact that they’ve just done so, but when they’re en route to a shop it’s very difficult to prove they’re not going. You can ask them: ‘Well show me that you have money on you or whatever else’ but that gets very difficult to manage.”
Smith said they’d also informed the city’s business community that informal food traders were allowed to conduct business and spaza shops may operate.
“Spaza shops may be open, people do not have to wear masks when entering these or gloves but certainly you should be trying to ensure that sanitiser is available and you should be reducing the number of people inside the shop.”
The city argued that neighbourhood watches should be allowed to patrol, as crime was still present, despite the lockdown.