South Africa and Covid-19, a tumultuous year

0
292

The governments decision allowed us to save lives while making sure that those vulnerable families are supported. Different financial packages were made available to all those communities and businesses that were in need.

Let’s spill the tea for a change on how has this year been for most of us in South Africa?

It has been a very challenging year, seeing the world’s entire economy crumbling and being on life support for the first time because of this deadly coronavirus.

This new environment forced us to come out of our shells and embrace this year as it was. It forced us to do things differently.

The Covid-19 has profoundly impacted us as South Africans and the entire world on how we do business in general. This virus has therefore changed a lot of what we have become used to as a people. On a personal level, we have become accustomed to wearing face masks. We have since seen a substantial scientific value of wearing face masks as it helped in saving lives.

It was also unfortunate that several small businesses closed because of this deadly virus and the different measures taken to curb its impact, i.e., lockdown. The closure of business

had an unintended effect on the jobs, has thus resulted in several people losing their jobs or their earnings reduced.

On the other hand, because of social distancing and other measures, working from home became a new normal, and going to the stadiums became a thing of the past. As I write now all, our local soccer matches played on empty stands.

On the positive side, we have seen our government response to the coronavirus. Thus far, to my observation, one of our government’s best decisions in recent years. It was a time when human lives triumph over business profits. The governments decision allowed us to save lives while making sure that those vulnerable families are supported. Different financial packages were made available to all those communities and businesses that were in need.

The President and the Minister of Health’s constant communication, in my view, also played a significant role in ensuring the general public that all is still under control and especially with the introduction of different measures to contain this virus.

Schooling was another bone of contention. There was a view by some that the schooling year is over. Still, the government or the ministry of primary education had a different perspective supported by scientific evidence that to return to school was possible and safer. We can applaud the department for its efforts in ensuring that the schooling continued without any hurdles. We can now say that we are finally closing the school year through those difficult decisions, and the matriculants have just completed their exams.

In the year ahead, we are still living with the coronavirus’s challenges and the opening up of new job opportunities in 2021. We must develop innovative approaches to stabilize our government finances while creating new jobs to reduce the rising unemployment numbers.

By Nyaniso Qwesha.