President Cyril Ramaphosa reintroduced restrictions on Monday after South Africa became the continent's first to record one million coronavirus cases. This would include the total banning of alcohol sales, widespread cancelling of events, and making the wearing of masks in public a legal requirement.
President Cyril Ramaphosa said in a televised address that cabinet had made a decision to move the country to level 3 restrictions from level 1, with immediate effect.
South Africa, which had the fifth highest number of positive cases in the world in March, is now ranked 14th, largely due to strict lockdown measures that effectively shut the country down. "Alcohol-related accidents and violence are putting pressure on our hospital emergency units", Ramaphosa said in a nationwide address.
This puts further strain on the country as recently the South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, addressed the nation placing stricter restrictions "with immediate effect" on December 14.
The country surpassed the 1 million mark on Sunday night when it reported 1,004,413 cumulative cases of COVID-19, including 26,735 deaths.
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The latest restrictions come days after several countries closed to all travel from South Africa.
The country's curfew will now start at 9 pm - from 11 pm previously - while non-essential establishments such as shops, bars and restaurants will close from 8 pm.
Mr Mkhize said the new figures indicate that South Africa is experiencing a second wave of the pandemic and government would need to consider further restrictions.
He said, "the number of new coronavirus infections is climbing at an unprecedented rate".
The 7-day rolling average of daily deaths in the country has risen over the past two weeks from 0.26 deaths per 100,000 people on December 13 to 0.49 deaths per 100,000 people on December 27. The country experienced the peak of its first wave between July and August.