• Policy Watch SA

IN THE LOOP (13)

Updated: a day ago


Vol. 1 No. 13, covering the week ending 22 October 2021

(copies of earlier editions are available on request)

FROM THE AUTHOR


Very few policy-making or legislative developments took place last week, which was the quietest for several years.


COVID-19


The circumstances in which the occupational injuries and diseases Compensation Fund covers an employee experiencing serious Covid-19 vaccination side-effects have been clarified.


A directive has been issued confirming that Kruger Mpumalanga airport is now open to ‘international scheduled operations and charter flights carrying passengers’; and that pre-packed meals may now be served during domestic flights.


Passenger vessels, including those used for international cruises, may now dock at South African seaports – subject to requirements prescribed in amendments to a ministerial directive in place since February.


A directive has been issued on the requirements to be met during school sports matches and other extra-mural or co-curricular activities at which limited numbers of spectators are now permitted.


A ‘rapid assessment’ report on the impact of the Covid-19 relief of social distress grant has revealed that many vulnerable people have been ‘denied’ a benefit to which they should have been entitled. Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu has blamed this on means test ‘exclusion errors’.


DEVELOPMENTS OF GENERAL INTEREST


Forestry, Fisheries & the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy has announced that South Africa is preparing a plan for attracting multilateral investment in its ongoing interventions to ‘accelerat(e) coal transition’, thus reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the context of climate change.


A national oversight committee has been established to monitor the 2021 Customary Initiation Act’s implementation.


DEVELOPMENTS OF SECTOR-SPECIFIC INTEREST


Mineral Resources & Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe has provided some insight into an in-principle agreement with mining industry representatives on sector transformation. (His speech was delivered on 7 October at a mining indaba in Johannesburg, but was only recently made publicly available.)


The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa has confirmed that the amended price cap regulations for reserved postal services will come into force on 1 April 2022.


OPPORTUNITIES FOR PUBLIC COMMENT

The Compensation Fund commissioner has called for input on proposals for replacing recently withdrawn regulations on the bank account verification system for occupational injury and disease claim payments.


FROM THE POWERS THAT BE


Possibly because government ministers are increasingly focusing on the upcoming municipal elections, nothing noteworthy was said on matters of public policy or law-making.


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