• The SAPS confirmed that South Africans will not be able to run or take their dogs for a walk in their estates or complexes during the national lock down. 
  • There was initial confusion after health minister Zweli Mkhize said it would be allowed.  
  • The SAPS, however, said the regulations are clear that people should stay in their homes and roads and parks do not include their homes. 
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

South Africans will not be allowed to run or take their dogs for a walk in their estates or complexes during the unprecedented 21-day lockdown, and cannot use communal gardens, the South Africa police service (SAPS) confirmed. 

South Africa locked down on Friday, forcing most business to close and people to stay at home, in a bid to slow down the spread of the deadly coronavirus in the country. 

There was initial confusion whether people will be able to run or walk their dogs in their estates or complexes during the lockdown after health minister Zweli Mkhize said it would be allowed.

National police spokesperson Brig Vish Naidoo has, however, said that the national disaster declaration is clear that people be confined to their place of residence, unless they are an essential service, buying goods, collecting a social grant, or seeking medical attention. 

Naidoo said the roads, parks and other amenities of the estate do not form part of anyone's "place of residence", and is therefore strictly prohibited. 

This also includes communal areas such as gardens and parking lots in complexes, Naidoo told Business Insider South Africa. 

He said it is a criminal offence to not comply with these regulations.  

In a letter to residents, Knysna’s Thesen Islands general manager Paul Burchell said everyone residing in the estate should stay in their homes, including children and live-in staff, according to the regulations. 

“There may be no walking around our streets and no gathering of people in groups at all, in any common area. This also means no leaving home to exercise or to walk dogs (or other pets),” Burchell said. 

He said the only visitors allowed into the estate will be food and medicine deliveries, caregivers for the elderly and other essential services. 

Sectional title specialist Graham Paddock said that managing agents and trustees do not have the power to tell owners they cannot use it, or can only use it for access.

Naidoo, nonetheless, called on estate and complex managers to assist the state by enforcing the regulations.

“The fundamental purpose of a lockdown is to drastically reduce the movement of people in order to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus,” Naidoo said.

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