The City of Cape Town is calling on the South African government to impose stricter regulations for the nationwide lockdown, including shorter shopping hours and an alphabetical system.

According to the City stricter regulations are needed to make implementation easier for the police and military.

“Currently, any person found on the street may plausibly claim to be out for the purposes of shopping for food. It is impossible for the police, whether SAPS, SANDF, Metro Police or Law Enforcement, to truthfully determine whether a person is entitled to be on the street or not,” says the City.

In response, the City is calling for a number of stricter measure to be put in place. The City has advised the government to limit shopping hours and shopping malls as well as spaza and tuck shops to between 9am and 1pm daily. This way, shoppers will be able to get their groceries after grant recipients have drawn their grant payments.

The City also suggests that an alphabetical system be put in place for shoppers to reduce the amount of people out on the streets during the day, or any kind of provision for police to better control the situation on the streets.

Another regulation they suggest is for the national government to relook at their stance on the deployment of the neighbourhood watches.

“There are thousands of well-trained neighbourhood watches in Cape Town who would be able to continue doing the good work they do every day in fighting crime, as we have already seen criminals changing their modus operandi to take advantage of the lockdown.

“These NHWs would also be able to assist as credible messengers to encourage communities to comply with the regulations and stay indoors – something it has become clear that we do not have nearly enough enforcement resources to achieve without the help of civil society.  The deployment could be limited to just the NHWs who have received accreditation from the Provincial Department of Community Safety and who we know are trained and vetted.”

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