Johannesburg-The Economic Freedom Fighter (EFF), a South African far-left Pan-Africanist political party, has rebuked President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa’s decision to reopen the economy in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic arguing that his decision will benefit white people’s capitalism at the expense of black people’s lives.
In a statement on Sunday, the EFF said the Government’s decision to uplift the lockdown measures could elevate the risk of spreading the virus.
The statement reads: “The EFF rejects, with great sadness, what is effectively the ending of the Covid-19 Lockdown. The announcement by Ramaphosa tonight must be read as resignation speech from Covid-19 and saving lives, especially black lives.
“In essence, the opening of the economy and the sale of alcohol stood as significant announcement tonight. These alone, have essentially ended the lockdown which sought to ensure social distancing, flatten the curve, prepare the health the healthcare system, and save lives.”
The EFF said Ramaphosa’s decision to uplift the lockdown regulations was made on no sound scientific and epidemiological basis that ensures the safety for South African citizens.
“This is despite their repeated commitment that science will be the only basis to guide decisions for reopening the economy. Tonight’s decision must, therefore, be categorically rejected as reckless and senseless only benefiting the white capitalist at the expense of black people’s lives,” reads the statement.
The reopening of the economy will see a spike in the numbers of people infected with the coronavirus, the EFF said.
“Up to this point. the South African Covid-19 curve of infections has worsened over the last weeks, now standing at 22 583 total infection. In fact, we are beginning to see a weekly average of over 1000 cases a day. A week ago, on the 17th of May, there were only 264 deaths. Today, there are 49; that is close to a double increase. All this happened under a lockdown. When the lockdown restrictions have been removed, all these numbers will shoot to the sky,” reads the statement.
Meanwhile, the EFF said the sale of alcohol will definitely cause more alcohol-related road accidents and interpersonal fights, therefore, putting unnecessary pressure on South African hospitals that are already struggling with the coronavirus patients.
“All trauma units in the country had rested from the cases related to alcohol. Alcohol sale is the effective undermining of all this effort to use hospital space and resources to focus on growing Covid-19 cases. In the next coming weeks, alcohol-related road accidents and interpersonal conflicts will start filling the trauma units in our public hospitals,” reads the statement.
The EFF also said the South African government should have decided to continue with lockdown so as to have time to expand quality healthcare and remove millions from the informal settlement, renovate, expand public schools, and sanitation for everyone.
The party also stressed on the point that only white people are safe from Covid-19 due to their proper sanitation, housing, and healthcare conditions. Approximately over 80% of black people in South Africa will not have access to healthcare for coronavirus treatment.