Professor Salim Abdool Karim said the alcohol ban was no longer needed as hospital admissions are dropping sharply across the country.
If President Cyril Ramaphosa will heed opinions such as Karim’s, we will have to wait and see. While the presidency has not confirmed when Ramaphosa will address the nation, we believe it will be sometime this weekend.
NO GOOD REASON FOR BAN ON ALCOHOL
Karim, in a interview with Refilwe Moloto on Cape Talk, said restrictions like banning alcohol and even banning smoking are no longer a necessity now that COVID-19 infections, deaths and hospitalizations are on the decline. He said in terms of health services it was no longer necessary.
“When it comes to things like alcohol, a lot of us are around ensuring that the key health services we need for COVID; our emergency departments, emergency rooms, theaters, ICU beds and oxygen are available for COVID patients, ”he said.
Karim said that now that hospital admissions are declining, the pressure has been released.
“So there is no good reason to maintain these kinds of restrictions if you look at the availability of health services,” he added.
Karim has also given the green light for interprovincial travel. The only problem is that the final decision is not in his hands.
“All provinces are showing a downward trend – and enough that the risk is steadily decreasing in all areas, so I see no reason why interprovincial travel should be an issue at this point,” he added. .
Although Karim said restrictions such as the alcohol ban, smoking ban and interprovincial travel may no longer be necessary, he said COVID-19 will continue to be a part of our agenda. lives.
“You cannot say that you have eliminated this virus. It’s still there and it’s still a threat right now until we have a vaccine or a cure, ”he said.
Karim used New Zealand as an example. He said on Monday that the country said it had conquered the virus, eliminated it and, two days later, on Wednesday, was due to step up lockdown measures, due to another outbreak.
COMPLETELY END THE LOCK
While a move to Lockdown Level 2 may be on the minds of many, Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen has bypassed the levels, saying any lockdown as we know it should end with immediate effect.
“We can no longer talk about levels that serve no purpose but to wipe out what is left of the economy and jobs. There can no longer be any bow to narrow interest groups or ANC faction agendas, ”he said.
“The lockdown must end immediately, and at the same time the irrational bans on alcohol and cigarettes as well as the curfew and travel restrictions must be lifted. And it certainly cannot be envisaged to extend the state of disaster, ”he added.