The Motsepe Family in partnership with companies and organisations that they are associated with, have pledged R1 billion to assist with the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its related challenges that are confronting South Africa and the African Continent.

These companies and organisations are:
• Motsepe Foundation
• Sanlam
• African Rainbow Capital (ARC)
• African Rainbow Minerals (ARM)
• and others

The Founder and Chairman of the Motsepe Foundation, Dr Patrice Motsepe said:

“Several hundred million rands will immediately be made available with the primary objective of saving lives and slowing and restraining the spread of the Coronavirus. We are purchasing sanitisers, disinfectants, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and are in discussions with Government, health workers and other stakeholders to assist with acquiring other equipment and making resources available which are essential for dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic. We’ve been advised that access to water for regularly washing hands is crucial for slowing and limiting the spread of the Coronavirus. We are therefore providing water to poor rural and urban communities by purchasing water tanks (jojos), drilling and equipping for borehole water and also building sanitary facilities.

The current lockdown has an impact on the goods, equipment and services that can be purchased immediately and the goods and services which can be provided when the lockdown has been terminated. Our short to medium term interventions include building additional classrooms, computer centers and laboratories in all the 9 provinces of South Africa to assist with the excessively high number of students per classroom in some schools; particularly in the context of the current Coronavirus pandemic and the social distancing requirements. Those schools in the poor rural and urban areas which do not have internet access or facilities will be assisted with study guides, scientific calculators, dictionaries and other educational equipment and facilities identified in consultation with the Department of Basic Education, school principals and teachers.

Poor and underdeveloped communities are ill-prepared to deal with the serious challenges and consequences of the Coronavirus pandemic and are in dire need of our assistance and contributions. We are committed to contribute to the provision of quality education, infrastructure and other facilities to better prepare and equip them to deal with future pandemics or catastrophes.”

We will be working in partnership with:

• traditional leaders, kings, queens and their communities that we have been working with for the past 20 years;
• the 34 Religious and Faith-Based organisations that participate in the annual Motsepe Foundation National Day of Prayer;
• National, Provincial and Local Government authorities;
• Trade Union and other Worker Representative organisations;
• NGOs and other local community representative organisations;
• sport organisations and entities;
• local, provincial and national business and professional organisations;
• black and white farmers and their representative organisations; and
• other organisations or structures that can assist or partner with us in dealing with the current Coronavirus pandemic.

The CEO of Sanlam Ian Kirk said:

“Sanlam has a rich history of always putting our people, our clients and our country first; hence our mantra of ‘Doing well, by doing Good’. Today, we’re proud of the partnership with the Motsepe Family and its associated companies. We believe these efforts will make a meaningful contribution not only towards fighting the Coronavirus, but also in developing the long-term sustainability of South Africans, particularly in poor and rural areas. Periods of profound uncertainty like these call for us to come together to support all the prudent actions that contain the scourge of this virus and its impact on our already fragile economy.”

The CEO of ARC Dr Johan van Zyl said:

“As a nation we are in unchartered waters in terms of the scale and danger that the COVID-19 pandemic presents to South Africans. It is now time for each and everyone of us to demonstrate leadership and help. ARC is a fairly young company with limited financial resources. Yet, it remains important that we make a contribution. In this regard we are partnering with companies and organisations with which we have common interests and share common values to ensure that the positive impact we aim to make is felt.”

We have been in contact with various Ministers and MECs and will also be in contact with the Government’s Coronavirus Solidarity Fund to identify specific initiatives and projects where we can partner and work together. There may be upliftment and developmental undertakings where they are better positioned than we are, in which case we may fund or donate with them on a particular project or partnership.

We want to thank Government for their leadership and cooperation including health workers, police, soldiers, as well as Religious and Faith-Based organisations, traditional leaders, trade union and other worker representative organisations, NGOs and other rural and urban organisations. We also want to thank business and in particular the Rupert and Oppenheimer families, the employees, boards and stakeholders of the companies that the Motsepe Family is associated with, for their assistance and contributions in dealing with the current Coronavirus pandemic.

South Africans have a history of uniting and working together when confronted with major and enormous challenges. We are confident that South Africa will in the medium to long term overcome the life-threatening and economic challenges caused by the Coronavirus pandemic and continue to build a bright and inclusive future for the people of South Africa and the African continent.

Millions of learners across the country are on lockdown and the Western Cape Education Department has called on  every parent to do their bit to ensure that  learners remain focused and stimulated.

The Department is planning for all eventualities – including home-based quality teaching and learning, using a variety of mechanisms including digital web-based resources, radio and televised broadcasts and catch-up programmes for when schools reopen.

The WCED’s ePortal has already been updated for home learning.

Click on the pictures below to access the resources:

Scams:
During the national COVID-19 lockdown, which is under way, residents should be aware of people posing as City officials wanting to do routine work at premises.

If staff need access to a property, residents must insist on City staff cards at the very least.

The only electricity services that continue are first line responses to network faults and breakdowns. Repairs that are imperative from a safety perspective are being prioritised. Repairs on streetlights are being done only if, after an assessment, it is deemed a safety risk for the community or electricity staff.

Water and Sanitation services continue as an essential service, however meter reading has been suspended for the period of the lockdown and affected residents will receive estimated accounts, based on their historical consumption.

All municipal workers and contractors must carry a work order number specific to that dwelling and a City-issued identification card. Residents should ask to check the official identification card before allowing anyone into their home.

The identification card must display the City logo, the name and surname of the staff member or mandated contractor, and must contain an embedded photo of the staff member or mandated contractor. Residents are not to allow anyone onto their premises until they have looked at the card and verified these details.

Any suspicious behaviour must be reported to the City’s law enforcement agencies or the City’s Fraud Hotline on 0800 323 130 or to the South African Police Service.

Key contacts
• For faults and emergencies or to report suspicious behaviour please send an SMS to 31220, or email power@capetown.gov.za or faultreport.centre@capetown.gov.za
• To check the credentials of someone purporting to be working in water and sanitation services, please email water@capetown.gov.za or SMS 31373 (max of 160 characters) or call 0860 103 089 or https://eservices1.capetown.gov.za/coct/wapl/zsreq_app/index.html

Residents can still submit water service requests related to the following, which will be attended to:
• Burst mains
• No water at a property
• Stolen meter
• Water quality complaints
• Sewer blockages/overflows
• Pump station faults/overflows
• Servicing of septic tanks
• Missing/stolen manhole covers

Electricity meter readings:
No on site meter readings are being done.
Billings will be based on estimations done over the lockdown period compared to the usage over the same period in 2019. After the lockdown period, normal billing procedures will resume.

To submit your own electricity reading:
• Register on www.capetown.gov.za/Cityconnect to insert a reading
• Read your own meter on a regular basis and send a photo of the meter reading by email to Electricity.MeterReading@capetown.gov.za or phone 021 444 6286/8432/8478/1554 or 0860 103 089 to give your meter reading

Informal Settlements:
The City deems its basic service offering within informal settlements as ‘critical services’. It continues to provide basic and essential services to existing and historic settlements in accordance with the national standards where it is possible to do so. The Western Cape Government and National Government departments as well as the City are working together to achieve enhanced COVID-19 measures for the most vulnerable groups in society.

Therefore, the City is putting in place measures to ensure the continuation of service delivery within informal settlements through the:
• Ongoing education and awareness drives in informal settlement areas
• Distribution of water supply via water tankers to specific informal settlements that do not have access to running water due to these being recently occupied through land invasion or where it is impossible to provide permanent services
• Ongoing collection of waste within informal settlements
• Ongoing sanitation services within informal settlements

Water restrictions due to municipal debt:
New restrictions due to municipal debt were suspended last week on Friday, 20 March 2020.
As for existing restrictions due to municipal debt, it must be noted: water is not cut off. It is restricted to a running trickle-flow after numerous warning letters have been sent to pay municipal debt and efforts to engage residents on debt management arrangements have not been successful. The water is not cut off, but the flow is reduced so that people can still use the water for hygiene and drinking.

We do this to prevent enormous water wastage and also to ensure that the municipality can still carry on functioning to provide services.

For the reconnection of water, please phone 0860 103 089 and elect option 2 to make a temporary payment arrangement that will be valid until the end of June 2020.

Importantly, as per the City’s Credit Control and Debt Collection Policy:
Customers should agree to an upfront payment and instalments for the next three months of:
• The current account and
• At least 1% of the total debt if the person only defaulted on two previous occasions
OR
• Current account and
• Payment of at least 10% of the total debt if the person already defaulted more than three times

Please continue to pay accounts to ensure the City remains fully functional during this crisis.

For account payments:
• The City encourages account holders to use the City’s online e-services portal to pay their accounts
• Other payment options available to account holders include paying online using their bank’s website or via ATM, at Nedbank
• The City is already listed as a beneficiary with all major banks, so account holders do not need to load bank details when paying online. Account holders can also register with www.paycity.co.za or www.easypay.co.za to pay accounts
• To pay via ATM, account holders can simply contact their bank to add the City as an ATM beneficiary

For information on how to apply for indigent relief, please send an email to indigent.relief@capetown.gov.za or visit www.capetown.gov.za/indigentbenefits

City’s contact centre:
The City’s contact centre has a limited telephone service.

Residents are requested to please log their service requests via SMS, email, or online as far as possible.

Furthermore, services are limited to water, sanitation, and solid waste and reconnections only.

The contact centre is still operating 24/7 to ensure we attend to queries related to essential services.

The contact details are as follows:
• Email – water@capetown.gov.za
• SMS to 31373 (max. of 160 characters)
• Phone 0860 103 089
• Online – go to www.capetown.gov.za, click on ‘City Connect’ and choose the applicable option, for example to report a fault

STATEMENT BY PREMIER ALAN WINDE:

As the country prepares to go into a 21-day national lockdown at midnight, I have an important message that I want to convey to all our residents across the Western Cape:

Staying home, inside your home, for the next three weeks, is the only way we are going to save lives.

I know what we are asking for is difficult, and it is scary, but we have overcome many, many challenges as a country. We can do it again, together.

But it needs each and every one of us to do our bit by staying in our homes.

If we all do this, we will be able to go back to our lives again and start to rebuild our economy. If we do not, and the virus continues to spread, many people will die, and the lock-down may be extended.

So now is the time. We can do this together. Let us be strong now for each other.

I also want to remind us all of our shared humanity: to be kind to one another. To show care and support in our own way. If we all are kind in this way, this time will pass quicker, and we will get out of this stronger as a country.

Be Kind. Stay Home. Save Lives.

Health situation report:

The first case of COVID-19 was reported in the province on 11 March. As at 9am, the province had confirmed 181 positive cases of COVID-19. The breakdown of confirmed laboratory cases is as follows:

City of Cape Town – 152
Overberg – 6
Cape Winelands – 10
Garden Route – 12
Unknown – 1

Three residents are currently admitted to hospital as a result of this virus.

I want to confirm that these are only confirmed laboratory cases. There are likely many more people who have the virus and who are not yet showing symptoms. That is why this lock-down is so important, and why staying home is our strongest weapon against it.

I want to assure you that our tracing teams are working tirelessly to locate every possible contact of these 181 cases. We have strengthened their capacity to do so and this remains a key part of our health response.

The moment a contact is found and confirmed – information is passed to the relevant district contact response team. This team then handles the daily follow ups. Each team consists of up to a hundred people and they know exactly where each case is. This week, the team were able to go in, identify, test and isolate a contact within a two-hour period.

The province has also in the last week introduced GIS mapping of cases, as well as the use of a forecasting tool to ensure that we are able to pinpoint on a map exactly where each infection is situated.

We do not share this information with the public in the interests of patient privacy. We have seen how the stigma of this virus plays out, with numerous fake social media accounts of people being infected in certain communities. We again urge you to be kind, and to respect each other during this time.

It is also very important that if you develop symptoms – such as a cough and fever – that you do not go to your clinic, hospital or doctor. You must first call the dedicated hotline on: 021 928 4102.

This hotline is currently fielding between 500 and 900 calls daily.

We have developed an online self-assessment tool, which allows people to determine their risk and whether they need to go for testing, which helps to filter the number of calls and the number of people visiting facilities. Over 28 000 people have used the tool since it was launched last week.

Preparedness:

Since my last update, my cabinet has been receiving daily briefings from the work streams.

Yesterday, our Cabinet approved a proposal by the Provincial Treasury to make funds available to fight the Coronavirus.

The Department of Health in the province has started the process of minimising the numbers of people using our health care facilities to reduce crowding and encourage social distancing. This includes limiting visitors to hospitals, and rescheduling elective surgeries and non-critical appointments.

This means we will be able to scale up capacity to respond.

For some of our 700 000 stable chronic patients, we have introduced home deliveries of their medications using our networks of community healthcare workers. We are also giving stable patients attending our facilities a two-month supply of medication to ensure they spend less time queuing in busy facilities.

We have had successful meetings with the private health care sector and general practioners and have ascertained the available resources in both private and provincial healthcare.

An internal Health Command response has been developed to ensure coordinated control in any scenario.

We have developed tented screening facilities to add alternative infrastructure. We are also working to develop acute facilities in existing wards for COVID patients and alternative isolation facilities, for patients who cannot do this at home.

We have allocated temporary step-down facilities, where patients who are mainly in need of oxygenation treatment, can go.

In line with World Health Organisation guidelines to increase testing, we have started to scale up our testing.

We expect to see our infection numbers increase as a result of this, however, we believe effective testing, combined with our contact tracing and the planned lockdown, are key in helping to flatten the infection curve and prevent our healthcare system from becoming over-burdened.

We have placed orders for R45 million in medical equipment including personal protective equipment (PPE), some of which will be arriving in the country in the first week of April.

A PPE guideline has been developed. Surgical masks should only be worn by anyone who is ill (flu, TB etc) and anyone who is working with patients.

A policy for waste and linen management for COVID-19 has also been developed by the Department of Health.

Lockdown:

As of 23.59 tonight, the entire country, except for those deemed to be an essential service, will be on lockdown.

This means that you will be required to stay in your home unless it is to go and buy groceries, go to the pharmacy or to seek medical attention.

Law enforcement will make sure this law is upheld. You must respect this lockdown, otherwise you may end up in jail. Worse still, you may cause the virus to spread, or it may be spread to you. Please – stay in your home.

Police have indicated that they will start to deploy from 10pm tonight.

Spaza shops that sell food will be allowed to continue operating. Retail stores will only be allowed to sell groceries and necessary items.

In line with the announcement made by Minister Fikile Mabalula, minibus taxis will be allowed to transport essential services workers and those making permitted movements. They will be allowed to operate from 05h00 until 9h00 and again from 16h00 until 20h00.

Funerals will be allowed provided fewer than 50 people are in attendance. There will be no night vigils.

To answer specific questions, we have developed an FAQ component on the lock-down our www.westerncape.gov.za/coronavirus portal. You can also submit questions that we will try and answer as soon as possible.

I again appeal to everyone to abide by the rules of the lockdown. We understand that this is an unprecedented time for many but if we do not all take every step possible now, lives will be lost. We have the potential to protect the most vulnerable in our society and save lives and we must all step up and take responsibility now.

The economy:

The Western Cape Government, together with its partners at Wesgro and the City of Cape Town, have been offering support to businesses.

We established the COVID-19 Content Centre for Business, a virtual centre made up of sector specialists developing reliable guidance to deal with queries and business concerns. This unit has, since its inception, received and handled 300 queries.

This team is now working with businesses to link them up to the assistance offered by the national government.

We have had sector specific meetings with tourism and hospitality, agriculture, and retail, textiles and manufacturing, and the services sector which includes Business Process Outsourcing (BPO).
The Western Cape Government will be revealing an economic response package soon to set out how government will assist the economy recover from the impact of this virus.

Social Services:

Rendering services to victims of crime and violence is an essential service. The Western Cape Department of Social Development and civil society organisations will continue to provide these services through provision of shelters and psycho-social support.

Four shelters have been identified as Stage 1 shelters to admit at risk victims of crime and violence.

Only referrals from a social worker with safety risk assessment and SAPS referral will be accepted. After the initial 14 days, clients will be transferred from a Stage 1 shelter to a Stage 2 shelter with the assistance of SAPS.

Stage 2 shelters may only admit people referred by Stage 1 shelters who have completed their 14 day stay. The Department of Health will assist with medical screening and medical needs of clients.

All social workers of funded social service organisations are to be on stand-by to provide psycho-social support services to victims of crime and violence. Psycho-social support at Thuthuzela Care Centres will continue.

The Department of Social Development is currently feeding 4920 beneficiaries at 72 sites across the province on a daily basis.

Let’s stop this spread together:

This is one of the most challenging moments our country has faced. But we all know what we are capable of when we work together. What we all need to do now is abide by the law -and to stay in our homes. If we do this, we can get through this, and many lives can be saved.

In conclusion, I want to support President Ramaphosa’s call on the nation to spend two minutes in prayer, reflection or silent meditation between 18h00 and 18h30 tonight. I will be doing so with my family.

I will be specifically thinking of all our essential service staff, law enforcement personal, nurses, doctors and other front-line staff who are going out, so we can stay home. They are our heroes.

I will also be thinking of each of you, and wishing you the strength I know you are capable of to get through this difficult time for our province and country.

Now is the time. Be Kind. Stay Home. Save Lives. And Let’s stop the spread.

Police Minister Bheki Cele has warned any person who contravenes the regulations of the nationwide lockdown from midnight on Thursday will be guilty of a criminal offence and will be liable to a fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months, or both.

During a briefing, members of the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster clarified what residents would be allowed to do and what has been prohibited during the lockdown which aims to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Allowed

· You will be allowed to collect social grants.

· You will be allowed to buy food.

· You will be allowed to seek medical attention.

· You will be able to visit the pharmacy for medicine.

· A gathering of 50 people will be allowed at a funeral.

· You will be allowed to access public transportation for essential services during specific times.

Prohibited

· You will not be allowed to go jogging in public.

· You will not be allowed to walk your dog in public.

· You will not be able to buy alcohol as its sale and movement has been banned.

· All gatherings have been prohibited, including gatherings on public roads, buildings, places and premises.

· Movement between provinces is prohibited.

· Movement between districts is prohibited.

Places you will be prohibited from accessing

· Public Parks

· Fleamarkets

· Public swimming pools

· Beaches

· Nightclubs

· Casinos

· Lodges

· Guesthouses

· Hotels

· Private and public game reserves

· Holiday resorts

· Shopping malls (excluding grocery store and pharmacies at the stores)

· Cinemas

· Taverns

· Bars

· Shebeens

· Any place normally open to the public where religious, cultural, sporting, entertainment, recreational, organisational or similar activities may take place.