The Eastern Cape and the Western Cape have agreed to restrict the movement of bodies of people who died from Covid-19 between the two provinces, while also enforcing restrictions on the transportation of corpses.
This was agreed to during an online meeting on Thursday between Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane and Western Cape premier Alan Winde.
Co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize and police minister Bheki Cele also attended the virtual meeting.
At the meeting, it was also agreed that joint co-operation on agriculture was needed to specifically manage the movement of seasonal workers between the two provinces, along with travel between the provinces in general.
The new protocols will be submitted to the national government for processing and consideration by the National Command Council.
Mabuyane said the meeting followed a discussion at the presidential co-ordinating council where the two provinces reported they were in talks trying to find protocols of co-operation.
“I must say that on almost every discussion we had during the meeting, we were agreeing,” he said.
“There is sufficient consensus around such discussions. Some of these discussions are interprovincial, so they need to be done in the context of national regulations.
“Hence the importance of having ministers participating in the bilateral talks.”
Winde said: “We welcome the opportunity to engage with the Eastern Cape on this matter, as travel between our two provinces by seasonal farm workers returning home or to work and to attend funerals is common.
“Regulations and protocols must be designed in such a way that they limit the spread of the virus, but still allow people living and working in the Western Cape who need to return to the Eastern Cape to bury loved ones, to grieve appropriately.”