NkosazanaDlamini-Zuma, who was scheduled to address the nation via a live stream and televised broadcast on Wednesday, has had her speech postponed. Just 72 hours after Cyril Ramaphosa confirmed the country would move to Level 3 of lockdown next week, the COGTA minister has been forced to delay the address for second time.
Things were meant to kick-off ar 12:30 on Wednesday, after it was postponed yesterday. The follow-up address from the socio-economic cluster, which looks to tackle the financial implications of shifting to Level 3, has also been put on the backburner. A statement from the Presidency’s Digital Communications head says, “The National Coronavirus Command Council media briefing on regulations relating to the COVID-19 Level 3 restrictions scheduled for today at 12:30 and the briefing by the social cluster scheduled for 18:00 have been postponed. Media will be advised on a new date and time in due course”.
Dlamini-Zuma was expected to outline how each industry will be allowed back to work, and she’s set to give us more clarity on the changes to our personal freedoms at the next stage of lockdown. Of course, it was about a month ago that NDZ made the now-infamous public speech, where she announced a continuation of the smoking ban – directly contradicting what the president had to say.
We are expecting much less drama this time around, whenever the briefing takes place- but more fool us, right? Ramaphosa has already revealed that alcohol will come back on sale for Level 3 of lockdown, whereas limits on exercise times and mandatory curfews will also be lifted.
But, should Dlamini-Zuma renege on any of these proposals, we can expect another fierce backlash against the political veteran. Indeed, the multiple postponements suggest that there are some kinks to iron out.