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High Court dismisses three applications to reopen beaches


23 December 2020

Staff Reporter/ PretoriaLIVE

Pretoria – The High Court in Pretoria has dismissed three separate applications relating to the Government’s  decision to close beaches in some of the Covid-19 hotspots areas during the festive season.

The applicants wanted certain beaches in the Eastern Cape and the Garden Route to be reopened.

Delivering the judgement Judge Hans Fabricious said the Government’s decision was not irrational or unlawful but was based on facts..

“Many facts put before me were largely  of a hearsay nature and that inadmissible. I appreciate that applicants had little opportunity to obtain expert  advice but even that does not allow me to admit otherwise inadmissible hearsay evidence and to base my judgement thereon. There is no doubt that the state has a constitutional obligation to protect the health of its citizens or inhabitants. The pandemic must be halted or its spread at least limited by all lawful and rational means”, said Fabricious.

The applicants to the case were the The Great Bak Business Forum and others, the Kouga Municipality and the Buffelsbaai Homeowners Association and others.

Last Monday, President Ramaphosa announced the closure of certain beaches and public parks during the festive season to curb the spread of Covid-19.

The closure applied to all beaches in the Eastern Cape and Garden Route. In KwaZulu – Natal beaches will be closed on what are “ traditionally the busiest days of the season”