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Zimbabwean refused entry into SA for not wearing a mask

by Staff reporter
01 Jan 2021 at 08:21hrs | Views
A Zimbabwean national was on 31 December 2020 refused entry into South Africa for not wearing a mask.

It is now illegal to not wear a mask in public places. President Cyril Ramaphosa announced this during his address to the nation about the country's response to the current surge of coronavirus on Monday.

President Ramaphosa has announced that South Africa has moved from Level 1 back to an adjusted Level 3 of lockdown in intensified efforts to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Ramaphosa says, "A person who does not wear a mask covering over their nose and mouth in a public place, would be committing an offence. A person who does not wear a mask could be arrested and prosecuted. On conviction, they will be liable to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 6 months or both a fine and imprisonment."

Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) has outlined the processes that law enforcement officials are required to follow should an arrest be carried out for failure to wear a mask in public spaces.

LHR's Deputy Director, Wayne Ncube, says law enforcement officials must first instruct a person to wear a mask in public before attempting to make an arrest.

"The wearing of a mask is mandatory and failure to comply with the verbal instructions from an enforcement officer, which includes the military and other government services, is committing an offence. The way it works is if you are approached by a law enforcement officer, and you fail to listen to their verbal instruction to put on the mask, then you can be arrested and charged with a crime. So there is an opportunity for compliance and not just a blanket arrest enforcement," explains  Ncube.

Source - Byo24News