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Health Department: COVID-19 Advisory Council Not Consulted On Lockdown Levels

The Department of Health has on Sunday admitted that the ministerial advisory council on COVID-19 was not consulted on the different levels of lockdown.

Some members of the council have publicly criticised the government on the continued lockdown, saying it had no basis in science and should be lifted.

The government met with council members at the weekend to try and resolve their differences.

After admitting that some of the government’s lockdown regulations were unclear, contradictory and poorly explained, President Cyril Ramaphosa told the nation last week that the decisions on easing lockdown restrictions are based on scientific evidence.

But government’s advisory council on COVID-19 said it didn’t advise for the lockdown to continue this far.

Acting director general at the Department of Health Dr Anban Pillay said the council was not established to advise the government on lockdown levels.

“The ministerial advising commit has not been involved in making recommendations on when the lockdown should be implemented and when it should be lifted and how it should be lifted.”

He said the council’s mandate was clear: “The ministerial advising committee has been established to provide information about the COVID-19 epidemiology, the treatment and the management of the disease.”

Business, some political parties and health experts have also called out the government on the extended lockdown, saying it was doing more harm to people’s livelihoods.

For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.