On the night of March 23, 2020, the President of the Republic of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, announced a 21-day confinement in the country. Measures taken to combat the spread of the coronavirus will not, however, affect workers in the telecommunications sector, Commerce and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel said at a media availability .
“We see digital infrastructure as an essential service and will ensure that fixed and mobile phone systems are maintained during the 21-day containment in South Africa,” said Ebrahim Patel.
He said that exempting workers and professionals linked to one of these services from confinement was only logical, since the continuity of operation of the essential means of communication which they ensured guaranteed the continuation of the economic activity which can be done at home.
Since the closure of schools, universities and the ban on assembly a few weeks ago, consumption of connectivity has increased in South Africa. The need for consumers has indeed increased and certain telecom operators like MTN, aware of the essential nature of telecom services in these times of health crisis, have lowered the cost of Internet packages.