South Africa bans alcohol again to combat Covid-19

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South Africa bans alcohol again to combat Covid-19


People loading boxes of alcohol into cars

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AFP

Image caption

This is the second ban on alcohol sales since South Africa’s outbreak began

South Africa has introduced new restrictions, including another ban on alcohol sales, to help contain the spread of coronavirus.

A night-time curfew has been imposed, and the wearing of masks outdoors is now compulsory.

President Cyril Ramaphosa said the alcohol ban – South Africa’s second this year – would take pressure off the national healthcare system.

It comes as total infections exceed a quarter of a million.

Deaths resulting from coronavirus have also risen to more than 4,000, and government projections estimate this could rise to 50,000 by the end of the year.

South Africa remains the hardest-hit country on the continent, and earlier this week recorded its highest-ever single-day increase in cases. Nearly half of them were in Gauteng, a province that’s become the outbreak epicentre.

In a public address, Mr Ramaphosa acknowledged “most” people had taken action to help prevent the spread, but he said there were still some who acted “without any responsibility to respect and protect each other”.

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