Closing beaches will potentially increase the spread of Covid

Issued by Manny De Freitas MP – DA Shadow Minister of Tourism
12 Dec 2020 in News

The Democratic Alliance understands that government, through recommendations made by the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), is considering the possibility of closing some beaches over the festive season.

Considering that experience shows that any such “interventions” by government has done nothing to curb the spread of Covid-19 but decimated the tourism industry, it is concerning that government is considering such proposals.

Closing beaches during the festive season, the time of the year when most people flock to beaches, will bury the tourism, travel and accommodation sectors near beaches.

Throughout most of this year, over the last few months, government has been the main culprit in the destruction of the tourism sector.

Presently about 1 million previously employed people in the sector are now unemployed.

Instead of draconianly closing beaches, government should rather ensure that open-air areas, such as beaches are kept open and that protocols such as social distancing are followed. Science shows that the spread of the virus is dramatically reduced in outdoor environments, such as beaches.

But then we have seen over the whole lockdown period that the NCCC does not use science as a basis to make decisions. Instead illogical political decisions are made that has destroyed jobs.

Government should be encouraging the public to be outdoors and not indoors where the virus can spread much easier.

The reality is that if holiday makers are prevented from going to beaches, they will congregate in areas such as shopping centres instead – exactly places where large crowds should not be congregating.

The DA again encourages government to do whatever it can to save jobs, as saving jobs as well as livelihoods are intricately linked

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