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WATCH LIVE: Inter-ministerial task team gives update on second day of lockdown

On day two of the 21-day lockdown ministers who form part of the COVID -19 National Command Council give an update on the lockdown in South Africa.

Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology Blade Nzimande at an inter-ministerial briefing on 24 March 2020 detailing how government will respond ahead of and during the 21-day lockdown announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande is the first minister to take to the podium, giving an update on the status of higher education since President Cyril Ramaphosa declared the national lockdown.

This is the second briefing by ministers since the lockdown came into effect.

On Friday, Police Minister Bheki Cele confirmed 55 arrests were made on the first day of the lockdown, but said he believed it had been a success.

The minister of social development Lindiwe Zulu has thanked parents for doing all they can to keep children occupied during the lockdown.

She said she has received calls from parents saying children were struggling to stay within the confines of the home.

Zulu has explained that providers and users of her department’s services must acquaint themselves with the new regulations and how they affect them.

The minister said payments of social grants will be paid at the end of the month, starting with elder persons, people with disabilities and those receiving grants of behalf children.

All other grants will be paid on 1 April in line with the normal payment schedule.

She said all is being done for grants to be paid successfully, including roping in the army and volunteers, but the true test will be on the day of collection.

Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said 41,000 water tanks have been procured for the country, with the Eastern Cape getting the most, to address water shortage.

She said her department is renting to buy water tankers for transportation. She adds that they will request communities to assign at least one person to monitor the tanks.

Sisulu refers to social distancing as ‘middle class’ solution as densification remains a problem in informal settlements.

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