Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane on Coronavirus COVID-19 alert level 3 tourism sector directions

26 Jun 2020

Statement by Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane – COVID-19 alert level 3 risk adjusted strategy tourism sector response measures and direction

In line with President’s announcement last week, we are continuing with the effort to reactivate the Tourism sector so that we can save businesses and Jobs in the sector. Working together with the sector, we have developed protocols and guidelines to ensure that as we reopen more tourism activities we protect the lives of employers, employees, tourists and South Africans at large.

Since the first of June when we opened, some of the subsectors with the commencement of level 3, we have seen businesses starting to contribute to increased economic activities and more and more South Africans whose livelihoods depends on this sector, going back to work. During this period, I have been encouraged by the manner in which the sector has adhered to protocols and guidelines in their operations. I personally visited accommodation establishments and restaurants to see for myself how they were handling the new normal and I experienced firsthand that the sector has embraced the new mode of operation.

Following further discussions with industry representatives on stringent prevention protocols and guidelines for the Tourism subsectors, Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has issued regulations that form the basis of the directions we are announcing today.

The amended regulations and directions cover economic activities under the current level 3 of the Risk Adjusted Strategy.

We therefore welcome the decision by NCCC and Cabinet to permit tourism services to reopen for the categories as stated in the amended Regulations.

1. Directions for restaurant, fast food outlets and coffee shops

1.1. All restaurants, fast food outlets and coffee shops must comply with the following Directions:

Records to be kept

1.1.1 Keep a daily record of all employees, delivery agents and patrons

Screening, Sanitising and Personal Protective Equipment

1.1.2 (a) screen each employee and delivery person; on arrival for shifts and on departing after  shifts, regularly sanitise the workplace, delivery transport, containers, and follow cleaning procedures; provide employees with masks to wear and hand sanitiser; and ensure that every employee wears the relevant Personal Protective Equipment. Ensure that delivery persons sanitize before and after handling card or cash payment.

1.2 Social Distancing, Sanitisation

Must in respect of employees and delivery persons ensure that

(a) employees and delivery persons (where applicable), maintain a distance of at least one and a half meters apart at all times;
(b) employees occupy scullery areas, and use hand wash basins, one at a time;
(c) employees that work in clearly defined spaces stay in their space as far as possible;
(d) employees move about using clear pathways with care and attention not to come in close contact with one another; and
(e) where contact between employees takes place, employees must wash hands and go back to safe-spacing as quickly as possible.

1.3 Collections

1.3.1 Demarcate an area for the collection of orders for delivery that is separate from the place where food is prepared; and
1.3.2 Designated contactless pick up zone for customers whose orders are ready to be collected.

1.4 Deliveries

1.4.1 When taking an order from a customer inform customers to -

(a) wear a mask when accepting orders from the delivery person; and
(b) sanitise hands after handling the package.

1.5 Entry and Sit Down

1.5.5 In respect of guests-

(a) Conduct a screening questionnaire (which will be published with guidelines) and take precautionary measures to protect the person and other persons in the premises. Such measures may include denying such a person access to the premises;
(b) Not allow any person into their premises, if that person is not wearing a cloth mask, or homemade item that covers the nose and mouth or another appropriate item to cover the nose and mouth;
(c) ensure that customers and guests wear masks at all times while they are in their premises except when eating or drinking;
(d) ensure that all customers are sanitized before entering the premises;
(e) demarcate in a visible manner a distance of a line at least 1.5 (one and a half) meters -
(i) from the point of sale serving counter towards the customer;
(ii) ensure customers que at least one and a half meters apart behind each other or sideways;
(iii) between  customers  queuing  next  to  each  where  two  payment  tills  are opened;
(iv) spreading seat capacity to enforce distancing of one and a half meters between guest; and
(v) consider a reservation system to manage demand, and help ensure capacity limits are adhered to.

1.6 Food service

1.6.1 No buffets shall be offered to guest for self-service;
1.6.2 Menus must be replaced with non-touch options or sanitised after each guest use;
1.6.3 Tables must be sanitised before and after each guest use;
1.6.4 Where possible and for instance while taking orders, waiting staff must stand at least a meter from tables;

2. Directions for hotels, lodges, bed and breakfast, time shares facilities, resorts and guest houses

Hotels, lodges, bed and breakfast, time shares facilities and resorts, guest houses must comply with the Directions as previously announced

3. Directions for conference and meetings

3.1 Conference and meetings venues must comply with the following directions:

3.1.1 The number of persons entering a conference and meeting venue shall not be more than 50 and conference and meetings shall ensure compliance with the requirement relating to physical distancing, which is at least one and a half meters.

3.2 Records to be kept

3.2.1  Keep a daily record of the full details of all employees, delivery agents and attendees

3.3 Screening, Sanitisation and Masks

3.3.1 Conduct at reservation, a screening questionnaire for every delegate in the format of the form issues with published guidelines,

3.3.2 set up screening stations before or after entrances, at the front of queues to facilitate screening of delegates at each and every entry.

3.3.3 after screening, where necessary, isolate a person in a facility within their premises designated for isolation.

3.3.4 No person shall be allowed into premises, if that person is not wearing a cloth mask, or homemade item that covers the nose and mouth

3.3.5 Delegates must wear masks at all times except when eating or drinking;

3.3.6 Sanitise delegates before entering into the premises;

3.3.7 Frequently sanitise guests during their stay in the premises or provide guests with sanitisers for frequent use;

3.3.8 Only individual water and individual mints condiments will be provided. The use of containers or bowls is prohibited;

3.3.9 Sanitise microphone and podium after use by every person; and

3.3.10 Designate a seat for each delegate and not allow a delegate to change the seat.

4    Directions for casinos

Casinos must comply with the following directions:

4.1. The number of persons entering a casino shall not be more than 50 percent based on the available floor space of the gambling floor and casinos shall ensure compliance with the requirement relating to physical distancing, which is at least one and a half meters.

4.2 Record Keeping

Keep a daily record of the full details of all employees, delivery agents and customers.

4.3 Screening, Sanitisation and Masks

4.3.1 Conduct a screening questionnaire for every guest in the format of form issued with the directions and take precautionary measures to protect that guest and others in the premises. Such measures may include denying a guest access to the premises.

4.3.2 After screening, where necessary, isolate a person in a facility designated for isolation within their premises.

4.3.3 No person shall be allowed into premises if that person is not wearing a cloth mask, or homemade item that covers the nose and mouth

4.3.4 Guests must wear masks at all times except when eating or drinking;

4.3.5 Sanitise guests before entering the premises;

4.3.6 Frequently sanitise guests during their stay in the premises or provide guests with sanitisers for frequent use;

4.3.7 Maintain at least a distance of one and a half meters between open machines; and

4.3.8 Sanitise all machine and other surfaces touched after every use, or provide guests with sanitisers to sanitise the surface that they will occupy and touch.

5. Directions for private self drive excursions remain as announced in previous media briefing

6. Furthermore restaurants, fast food outlets and coffee shops; Hotels, Lodges, bed and breakfast, time shares facilities and resorts and guest houses; Conference and meeting venue; including Casinos shall adhere to the following Directions:

6.1 Training of Employees

The employer must regularly provide information and train employees and delivery persons on the COVID- 19 health protocols issued by the Minister of Health from time to time, including protocols on the following:

(a) The procedures related to the use, reuse and wearing of masks;
(b) the utilisation of Personal Protective Equipment;keeping physical distance;  
(c) basic hygiene practises including the washing of hands;
(d) cleaning and disinfecting of equipment and surfaces;
(e) contactless operations;
(f) package handling; and
(g) handling of orders and delivery to customers.

6.2  Employer must inform employees, delivery persons on the responsibility to advice the employer if they are tested positive for Covid-19 or have been in contact with someone who is Covid-19 positive.

We take this moment to appreciate the role played by various leaders of the sector, specifically captains of industry, leadership of TBCSA together with various small businesses in townships, rural communities, the Women in Tourism and other individuals who have reached out to make submissions as we move to rebuild our sector.

I would like to also take this moment to appreciate the patience during this time to appeal for patience as we work on further reopening more subsectors. Whilst we are working on the re-opening of the sector one should not lose focus on the health risk of the pandemic, particularly as the rate of those infected has exceeded the 100 000 mark and we are yet to reach our peak. It has become even more important to adhere to all safety protocols. These regulations will come into effect from Monday.

For media enquiries:

Hlengiwe Nhlabathi-Mokota
Spokesperson for the Ministry of Tourism
Email: hnhlabathi@tourism.gov.za
Cell: 064 754 8426

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