If you are a South African, then among several important things such as the state of the economy and the situation with jobs or the paucity of the same in a troubled time with the COVID 19 restrictions making life even more difficult, there’s yet more to be aware of. Something that can’t be ignored. So what is it exactly?
Well, here’s what you need to know. The Rainbow Nation has, with immediate effect, put a travel ban or restriction on as many as 57 countries that is has simply ‘banned’ in the travel or leisure list.
According to the restrictions put in place as per the ‘banned travel list’ for Level 1: no South African can visit 57 countries from around the world. The declaration was made according to the decision taken by important minister Fikile Mbalula, who put it rather succinctly, “South Africans would be allowed to venture abroad to almost every other country in the world for as long as they do not feature on the banned leisure travel list.’
Pretty clear then?
In fact, the above restriction came into place after months of speculation became the norm on what might be the future of the country’s international travel program and the restrictions thereof.
What also illustrates South Africa’s strong stance in this regard that the sheer process of opening of its international borders has been a very tough process.
The measures, therefore, state it clearly: the country must walk before it can run any further in these troubled times plagued by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Having said that, it’s worthwhile to note that the nation is trying in its best capacity to adhere to simple albeit necessary social distancing norms, a sequence of steps that include:
Wearing of masks at public places
In addition to the above, a report published on popular Protea platform The South African also highlighted the current development by underlining the following:
South Africa has split all countries into three categories: High-risk, Medium-risk, and Low-risk. People from any High-risk countries will not be able to travel to South Africa for leisure purposes. Business workers, investors, and high-skilled professionals (including diplomats) from these nations are permitted, however.
Moving on, the list of countries that South Africans will not travel to and will also not accept any visitors from happens to include the likes of: USA, UK, Jordan, Israel, India, Paraguay, Portugal, Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname, Slovakia, Slovenia, Nepal, Oman, Palestine, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Jamaica, Kosovo, Russia, Qatar, Romania, Switzerland, Ukraine, among many others.
Having said the above, for months now, there have been disputes on whether the regularity and quantum of testing (of COVID 19 cases) are satisfactory with the said matter becoming one of the more polarising subjects debated across the country.
The only ray of positivity, if it could be put in that way, is that at a time where there are pressing concerns about the increasing lack of jobs across both private and public enterprises, the latest data (from enca) points to the fact that the South Africa unemployment rate declined to 23.3% in the second quarter from 30%.
Can the country expect better days yet in the imminent future?