Govt faces mounting legal action from different sectors of society

Organisations and businesses have turned to the courts to challenge some of government's restrictions and measures during level four of the lockdown.

President Cyril Ramaphosa addressing the nation. Picture: GCIS

JOHANNESBURG - In light of relaxed regulations, government is facing mounting legal action from different sectors of society.

Organisations and businesses have turned to the courts to challenge some of government's restrictions and measures during level four of the lockdown.

Among them is British American Tobacco's legal threat, which has given government until 10 am on Monday to reverse the decision prohibiting the sale of cigarettes.

Government had originally indicated it would allow for the sale of tobacco products, but later backtracked on the decision, a move that has been highly contested.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional (Cogta) Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said the reversal came after government received at least 2,000 complaints from the public.

Meanwhile, the Tebeila Institute for Leadership and the African Institute for Human Rights planned to take the Department of Basic Education to court on Tuesday to prevent it from opening schools.

The institution’s Balushi Fenyane said parents could not be expected to remain at home to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while their children attend school in order to save the academic year.

Other measures have also been scrutinised, including the embargo on alcohol sales and government's relief package for businesses.