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Zithabiseni: FF Plus welcomes court ruling that facility must be closed

The FF Plus welcomes today's ruling by the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria that the Zithabiseni quarantine facility in Mpumalanga must be closed and that the more than 100 people must be allowed to leave.

This ruling serves as proof that the quarantine facilities in South Africa, where people who are returning to South Africa from neighbouring countries are housed, are not adequately equipped to accommodate humans. Over the past month, the FF Plus has received various complaints about similar problems at other quarantine facilities across the country and the Court's ruling marks a watershed moment in the matter.

The ruling will oblige the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure, Patricia de Lille, and the Minister of Health, Zweli Mkhezi, to pay attention to all these facilities to ensure that they are ready, hygienic and up to standard before people are housed there. It also paves the way for provincial governments and municipalities to join hands with the ministers and ensure that the facilities comply with the legal health requirements.

This was a test for Regulation 480, Section 7, which was issued on 29 April 2020 and today's ruling makes it clear that people may not be held against their will in terms of some draconian regulations and without getting the necessary Covid-19 tests done.

The FF Plus will ask the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure as well as the Minister of Health to allow Members of Parliament to visit these facilities across the country in order to fulfil their oversight role.

Facilities must also be urgently assigned to specific MPs who must conduct the oversight process.

The FF Plus is of the opinion that all the other facilities about which complaints have been received must be closed seeing as they also do not meet the general health standards.

Contact details: 060 556 4347

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