'It felt like Freedom Day' - South Africans hit the streets on Day 1 of the Level 4 lockdown

2020-05-01 08:48

Although it's a public holiday on the first day of the new Level 4 lockdown, many South Africans have been up early and are taking advantage of the fact that they can now step out of their homes and exercise, thanks to a slight easing of restrictions.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma announced on Wednesday that South Africans could run, cycle and walk from 1 May but only within a 5km radius from their homes between 06:00 and 09:00, and not in groups.

In Sea Point, Cape Town, residents used the opportunity to stretch their legs, despite the misty conditions.

Cyclists were also happy to be out and about in the Helderberg Nature Reserve. 

One rider told News24: "We're grateful to just be able to be here - even if we can only look and not touch."

The promenade at Durban's beachfront was also packed with residents taking advantage of the new restrictions. 

There were similar scenes in Emmarentia, Johannesburg, as residents made their way out for a walk, run or cycle. 

"I was so excited. This morning I got up at like half past five. And I was like, yes! I stood by the door until five to six and when those gates opened, it felt like Freedom Day," Christoff Swanepoel told News24.

Many decided to take up a challenge put out by corporate attorney and founder of #CountryDuty, Tumi Sole, to take to the streets during the three hours allowed for exercise purposes.

Read more on:    cape town  |  johannesburg  |  lockdown
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