Days after President Cyril Ramaphosa told South Africans during his State of the Nation Address (Sona) that government intends on ending the National State of Disaster, Cabinet has approved yet another extension.
The current extension would have ended on Tuesday. However, on Saturday Cabinet approved the final extension of the national State of Disaster to 15 March 2022.
South Africa has been in lockdown for at least 687 days.
The strict lockdown regulations have prevented artists and event organisers from hosting big concerts, meaning they haven’t had a steady income for almost two years.
Events were mostly prohibited during the last two years of lockdown, and on the current level 1 lockdown, regulations only allow for 1,000 people to attend an event indoors and 2,000 people outdoors.
While the curfew has been lifted, artists and event organisers say that having 2,000 people attend an event is just not enough. They need more people to be able to attend events.
South African DJ, record producer and Kwaito artist Mthokozisi Khathi, known by his stage name DJ Tira, is desperate and has taken to Twitter to beg President Ramaphosa to please open up the country a little more.
In a video he shared on his Twitter account, tagging the Presidency’s account, the producer said that they are used to hosting between 15,000 to 20,000 people at an event.
“When is the country going to be open, because us as event organisers are only limited to hosting 2,000 people. In fact, make that 1,500 people because you still have artists, suppliers, the promo girls… everyone who works at the event, you can’t charge them. We can’t sell tickets to them so we end up selling 1,500 tickets.”
“So, Mr President, Rams, Baba, me and you used to get along, I remember me and you video calling each other, so, I think you will be able to remember me. Please, please do something. We are dying of hunger. Can we open the country a little bit more? Maybe 5,000 people or 10,000 people so that we can generate more revenue and so that everybody can eat.”
He adds that so many people make a living from events, including artists, suppliers and organisers.
“So many people chow there [at events], so please, please, we want to chow too. Can we please open the country up a little more?”
Watch the video below:
Ramaphosa on Thursday evening said it was his intention to end the national state of disaster as soon as national health measures and legislation to contain the pandemic have been finalised.