End State of Disaster - IRR to Union Buildings

14 January 2022 - Despite South Africa going into another Covid-19 trough Cogta Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is poised to extend the “State of Disaster” for a 23rd month on January 15. The IRR is sending a team to the Union Buildings to deliver a petition to end the “Disaster” and return parliamentary oversight.

Said Gabriel Crouse: ‘The National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) is a rudimentary dictatorship in both ancient and technical senses of the term. Parliament’s oversight has been blinded in one eye, specifically blinding scrutiny into the NCCC and its affiliates, while the latter have seized Parliament’s power to make the de facto law of the land.’

Over 16,000 have signed the IRR petition that will be delivered to the Union Buildings on January 14.

The petition makes the following demands from ordinary citizens:

  • End the State of Disaster;
  • Disband the National Coronavirus Command Council; and
  • Amend the Disaster Management Act to protect Parliament in the future

Crouse asked: ‘Can the Presidency or Cogta Ministry name one good thing the government did during the fourth wave that required a “State of Disaster”? Moreover, what did the NCCC do during the fourth wave that required “State of Disaster” declarations throughout the third trough, which lasted roughly three months, with minimal cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from Covid-19?’

‘This is a power grab plain and simple’, concluded Crouse. ‘The Rule of Law, the checks and balances achieved by a separation of powers, our democracy itself is mutilated when the NCCC pretends a virus is the reason it continues to sideline Parliament. Dictatorial emergency powers are intoxicatingly hard to give up, but that is what the Constitution requires, and that is what our petitioners demand.’

‘Dlamini-Zuma would be wise not to cross the line tomorrow. Scientific experts like virologist Shabir Madhi are making the point but anyone who looks at the case, hospital and death numbers can see that this country is not in a Covid State of Disaster. We are going to the Union Buildings to urge Dlamini-Zuma and the Presidency to face that fact.’

The IRR team will deliver over its petition, signed by over 16,000 citizens, to end the State of Disaster to the office of the Presidency at 11am today.

Media contact: Gabriel Crouse, IRR Head of Campaigns – 082 510 0360; gabriel@irr.org.za

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