Trade union Solidarity and government reach agreement on termination of state of disaster  – The Citizen



South Africa’s state of disaster is expected to end on the 5 April.

This is according to trade union Solidarity, who said Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma provided a firm intention to end the state of disaster.

Solidarity said the date falls on the same day the court would have heard the union’s urgent application to end the state of disaster.

Solidarity and government also agreed that, should the state of disaster not be terminated on 5 April, the union could proceed with its urgent application in court on 6 April.

The agreement between the parties comes after correspondence and several discussions between the legal teams of Solidarity and the government that took place over the past week.

Solidarity chief executive Dr Dirk Hermann said the state of disaster is irrational and unlawful.

“The government has realised this and wanted to avoid a court case at all costs. This is a major breakthrough for ordinary South Africans. The strange Command Council can now be replaced by parliamentary oversight, as it should be.”

“After more than two years of abnormal government and major uncertainty we are finally moving away from empty promises and feeble excuses. The end of the state of disaster is in sight, whether it is in terms of our agreement with the minister or by court action the next day. We are not going to wait for the government any longer,” said Hermann.

Solidarity also announced that it would challenge the irrationality of the newly proposed health regulations.

“We will give our full input but if the government proceeds with the regulations, we will test them in court. The lifting of the state of disaster is a huge step but we cannot allow certain elements of the state of disaster to be perpetuated in the health regulations. The government’s state of disaster powers cannot become permanent power,” Hermann concluded.

Last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa, during his family meeting, announced his intention to end the State of Disaster around 16 April, after the one month of public comments on proposed amendments to the National Health Act closed.

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