Policing of Eastern Cape beaches not possible

Premier Oscar Mabuyane’s spokesperson, Mvusiwekhaya Sicwetsha, was asked the same question about the blanket ban in the province.

“We asked for that because of the risk levels,” he responded.

However, Pakati stressed those in the hospitality and tourism sectors should be assured that their operations in the coastal areas would remain unaffected.

“Remember, hotels and restaurants are open. People are not coming there to swim.

“Our main issue is people swimming in large numbers and recklessly gathering in open spaces, so the hospitality and tourism sector is not going to be affected by this.”

The Garden Route district municipality in the Western Cape, another hotspot, is not taking the beach ban in the region lying down.

On Tuesday, it and regional stakeholders undertook to challenge the ban.

DA MPL Jane Cowley said the Eastern Cape’s beach ban would decimate the province’s fragile tourism industry.

“Businesses hoping the December holiday break would bring a much-needed cash injection after the disastrous first round of lockdown measures are in despair.

“Cancellations have already begun streaming in as visitors take their business elsewhere,” she said. 

“These new draconian measures are, for many, the final death knell for their businesses and the end of thousands of jobs in the tourism sector the length and breadth of the Eastern Cape coastline.”

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