Underground alcohol trading has kicked in, in the Nelson Mandela Bay, after last night’s banning of alcohol sales.
Prices for different brands of alcohol are said to have already surged by between 50% and 100%.
This after President Cyril Ramaphosa moved the country to lockdown Level 3, saying it was necessary to help slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Addressing the nation last night, Ramaphosa banned the sale of alcohol for two weeks, placed a curfew across the country from 9PM to 6AM daily, as well as ordering that non-essential establishment, such as bars and restaurants, must close at 8PM.
Some residents say that they understand the threat of the coronavirus, but a blanket ban on sales is too much.
“The only thing that should have happened is to reduce the days and hours. What happened immediately after the president announced, just a minute after the announcement prices went up,” says a resident.
“Yes, I agree with my friend. The whole thing is going to create a problem. Black market is going to increase now,” says another resident.
Level 3 Lockdown | Port Elizabeth residents react to stricter regulations:
The Eastern Cape government is calling on citizens to be extra cautious as the province is grappling with an increasing number of COVID–19 hotspots areas.
Last night, President Ramaposa declared Chris Hani District, Buffalo City, Amathole District, Alfred Nzo District and the OR Tambo District as hotspot areas in addition to the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro and the Sarah Baartman District, which have already been declared hotspots.
To date, the province has recorded over 7 000 deaths and more than 160 000 infections.
Spokesperson for Eastern Cape government Mvusiwekhaya Sicwetsha says the increase in infections is due to non-compliance to safety regulations.
“The infection is spreading because some of our people have lowered the guard. All gatherings have been put on hold. We expect everyone to comply with that decision. We appreciate the fact that Ulwaluko (Initiation school) has been closed except for those initiates that are already in. They will be assisted to complete the process. Anyone who wants to go through Ulwaluko will have to wait until its open again. And we appeal to our people to take heed of these decisions because they are here to protect you from being infected.”
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