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Restaurants Hope For More Clarity On New Regulations Today

Restaurants will be closed for another weekend before sit-down service can resume.

Eateries have been eager to get back to business as they have been shut since the lockdown started in March.

On Thursday night, the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs confirmed the president’s announcement that the ban on gatherings at restaurants, casinos, theatres, museums, and libraries had been lifted.

The ban is lifted, but affected industries and citizens are still waiting to hear about sector-specific safety protocols.

Dining at restaurants will be allowed, but the on-site consumption of liquor is still prohibited.

Partner at Mooney Ford Attorneys, Ashton Naidoo, said they had been given the assurance restaurants would be able to trade from next week.

“We’re getting to a place where most restaurants will be able to trade from 1 July, so one more weekend to remain compliant with the law. It’s a lot to ask given the fact that they’ve not traded for the last three months, but we want to be on the right side of the law and we’ll wait two more days to have those regulations in place.”

Naidoo said the department informed them that directions should be ready by Friday afternoon, but this would probably only be announced on Monday.

“The directions are currently being drafted and should be ready by the end of today.”

Tourism Minister Mmamuloko Kubayi-Ngubane is expected to hold a briefing on the amended regulations at 5 pm on Friday afternoon.