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Mkhize wants more power to restrict your behaviour – after the State of Disaster

15 October 2020 2:05 PM

"Why does he want those powers? I am worried about that," says law Professor Elmien du Plessis. "We need an explanation."

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize wants more power to restrict the behaviour and movement of South Africans – even after the State of Disaster ends.

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

What does the law say?

Koketso Sachane interviewed Professor Elmien du Plessis of the Faculty of Law at North-West University.

Du Plessis reckons it’s a “curious” move from Minister.

She says she’s not yet alarmed, but Mkhize needs to explain in more detail why he wants those powers.

The Disaster Management Act… coordinates responses… implementation wasn’t great. It’s supposed to be a lot more democratic... It’s a good piece of legislation to handle a pandemic… but there was a lot of dominance by the Health Department…

Professor Elmien du Plessis, Associate Professor of Law - North West University

I’m curious why Minister Mkhize suggested having regulations dealing with things such as lockdowns under Health… Why does he want those powers? I am worried about that…

Professor Elmien du Plessis, Associate Professor of Law - North West University

With regulations, there’s no oversight like there is when we make legislation… I’m curious, but not totally alarmed. What is the rationale? I don’t think it’s necessarily sinister… but we need an explanation. We need to keep an eye on the executive to ensure it doesn’t vest power in itself without any oversight…

Professor Elmien du Plessis, Associate Professor of Law - North West University

For more detail, listen to the interview in the audio below.


15 October 2020 2:05 PM

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