WC's Winde calls on Ramaphosa to end all COVID restrictions

This comes ahead of the United Rugby Championship final between the Stormers and Bulls in Cape Town this coming weekend.

FILE: Western Cape Premier Alan Winde. Picture: @alanwinde/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has reiterated his call to president Cyril Ramaphosa to convene an urgent President’s Coordinating Council, stressing that it was high time that all COVID-19 restrictions were done away with.

This comes ahead of the United Rugby Championship final between the Stormers and Bulls in Cape Town this coming weekend.

Winde said that while scores of people were looking forward to watching Saturday's match, the number of people who could attend in person sadly remains capped by unnecessary COVID-19 restrictions.

At present, only 50% of tickets are allowed to be sold in terms of the existing COVID-19 restrictions.

The premier said that he was deeply concerned that an event such as this, which creates significant economic activity in the province, was not able to operate at its full capacity.

"We can only out 27,500 people into the stadium when in actual fact w should be putting 55,000 people in the stadium. Those extra thousands mean thousands more jobs and of course, our economy can ill afford restrictions right now," Winde said.

Winde said that competitor nations around the world had already removed all restrictions.

"As to when people are making tourism decisions on which countries to visit, we fall off that list. When people are trying to build conference facilities and conferencing, we fall off that list. We don't happen to be on the big events lists now," the premier said.

Winde said that he wrote to the president on 27 May and again on 7 June calling for an urgent PCC to table the Western Cape's latest data in support of the complete removal of the remaining COVID-19 restrictions.

He said that despite follow-ups having been sent, no meeting had since been called.

"We need to make sure that our congregations are back in places of worship. We need to remove these restrictions urgently in the interests of jobs, in the interests of people putting food on their table. Our country can really ill afford the unemployment levels we have at the moment," he said.