Level 4 Lockdown: Everything You Need To Know

South Africa will enter into Level 4 lockdown from 1 May 2020. During this lockdown period business are not allowed to simply open their doors and careful consideration should be given to the strict regulations and restrictions managing this level 4 lockdown (“Level 4 Lockdown”).

During the Level 4 Lockdown, a person may only leave their place of residence to –

  • perform an essential or permitted service, as allowed in Level 4 Lockdown;
  • go to work where a permit has been issued;
  • buy permitted goods;
  • obtain services that are allowed to operate as set out in under the regulations;
  • move children, as allowed per the regulations; and
  • walk, run or cycle between the hours of 06h00 to 09h00, within a five kilometre radius of their place of residence and provided that this is not done in organised groups.

When a person is permitted to move in terms of the regulations, it is mandatory for them to wear a cloth face mask at all times. Additionally, there is a curfew in place whereby all people need to be inside their homes from 20h00 to 05h00 except where a person has been granted a permit to perform an essential or permitted service, or is attending to a security or medical emergency.

No local or inter-provincial travel is allowed, except for –

  • workers who have a permit to perform an essential or permitted service who have to commute to and from work on a daily basis;
  • attending a funeral, as allowed;
  • transportation of mortal remains; and
  • for learners who have to commute to and from school or higher education institutions on a daily basis during periods when those institutions are permitted to operate.

Any person who was not at their place of residence, or work before the lockdown period and who could not travel between provinces, metropolitan and district areas during the lockdown, will be permitted, on a once-off basis, to return to their places of residence or work and will be required to stay in such place until the end of Level 4 Lockdown.

Hygiene and social distancing must be adhered to at all times and screening must be done at workplaces and public places.

Businesses which will be allowed to open under this Level 4 Lockdown, include:

  • Wholesale and retail – the retail sector has increased its activities and a wider list of personal toiletries will be allowed for sale as well as winter clothing and shoes.
  • Manufacturing – the manufacturing sector now includes more factories and workplaces, other than food, healthcare and fuel.
  • Transport and logistics – cargo for domestic and neighbouring countries is allowed, and essential goods. E-hailing and public transport under the curfew (20h00 to 05h00).
  • Media – production for TV, radio and other broadcasts will be open.
  • ICT – all telecommunications, ICT equipment, and airtime services are open. Postal services and courier services are also allowed.
  • Services – this includes vehicle recovery, emergency car repairs and also emergency repair work by plumbers, electricians, roof work, locksmiths and glaziers.
  • Agriculture and forestry – the agriculture sector will largely reopen, with forestry and fishing allowed, as well as the harvesting of grain and oil seeds, and key imports and exports.
  • Mining – coal production for Eskom scaling up to full employment, open-cast mining scaling up to 50% and thereafter scaling up to full employment, all other mining starting in batches scaling up towards 50% employment.
  • Power and water – all electricity, gas, and water supply is permitted.
  • Construction – civil engineering for public works projects including water, energy, sanitation is allowed.
  • Food service and accommodation – accommodation not permitted, except for quarantine and essential services purposes. Restaurants are allowed to open only for food delivery services from 09h00 to 19h00 and subject to restriction on movement, sit down or pick-up is not allowed.
  • Domestic workers – live-in staff and support for level 4 services is allowed.
  • Healthcare – all social work, care and relief work is allowed as well as funeral and cremation services.
  • Finance and business – financial and Business sectors will be open but if possible, employees must work from home.

Companies which have employees returning to their place of work, who cannot work from home, must also ensure they do the following:

  • employees must be screened for symptoms and have their temperatures checked;
  • hand sanitizers must be used by all people entering the workplace;
  • social distancing must be observed; and
  • cloth face mask must be worn by employees at all times.

The following restrictions will remain in place during the Level 4 Lockdown:

  • no alcohol is to be sold;
  • no tobacco, tobacco products, e-cigarettes and related products is to be sold;
  • no passenger air and sea travel is allowed; and
  • no gyms, concerts, cinemas, and gatherings.

VDMA is fully operational during the Level 4 Lockdown and we are able to assist you and your business with any corporate and commercial law needs during this time.

*The content of this article is correct at the time of its publishing. Please note that the Regulations governing the various levels of lockdown are subject to amendment by the Government of South Africa.


Contributing Advisors

Altug GuzeldereManaging Partner, Guzeldere & Balkan Law Firm