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Oudtshoorn’s Response to COVID-19

Oudtshoorn, 18 March 2020 – On 17 March, during a Special Council Meeting, the Oudtshoorn Municipal Council unanimously resolved to put measurements to combat the Coronavirus pandemic following the President’s declaration of National State of Disaster.

“We have decided to put mitigating measures in place to protect the citizens and visitors of the Greater Oudtshoorn, since the safety of everyone is a higher priority to us,” said the Executive Mayor Colan Sylvester.

In an attempt to prevent infection and spread of COVID-19, the Council has resolved to the following:

  • To close the Cango Caves for a period of two (2) weeks starting from 18 March 2020 in line with the dates set in the declaration as announced by the President. Council will be reassessed the situation after the two (2) weeks and make an announcement regarding the assessment. That Cango Caves personnel report for normal duties as usual.
  • That the Oudtshoorn Disaster Management Cluster convene their statutory stakeholders meeting as scheduled to coordinate and put in place mechanisms to combat COVID-19 Pandemic.
  • That scheduled Council meetings be convened in the absence of the public until 14 April 2020, due to COVID-19.
  • All public engagements, ward meetings, sectoral and other IDP and Budget-related public participation meetings are cancelled till further notice.
  • All public gatherings and events at municipal sports grounds, communal facilities (Town Halls, Community Halls, and the Thusong Centre) and libraries are to be cancelled or postponed until further notice
  • That the Administration communicate with the public through printed and social media the mechanisms which the Municipality will put in place at all Municipal facilities to combat COVID-19.

The manager for Oudtshoorn Municipal fire, rescue and disaster Management, Adél Supra-Vertue additionally announced the following: 

  • A register will be placed at all municipal buildings which will keep track of all individuals entering and exiting the building.
  • The Municipality is in a process to buy hand sanitisers which will be placed at all Municipal Buildings
  • Event organisers for event with less than 100 attendees must apply at the Municipal Disaster Management offices for approval of the event. The contact person for the applications is Irene Malgas on Tel: 0442037800/01 email:

The Municipality cannot prohibit the gathering of groups at private venues, but everyone is advised to please follow protocols mentioned by the President, the Department of Health and the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD).

The public is advised that it practises social distancing and an increase in awareness of social hygiene by;

  • washing hands frequently with soap and water or hand sanitisers for at least 20 seconds;
  • covering the nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with a tissue or flexed elbow;
  • avoiding close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms
  • all individuals who have returned from any foreign destination in the last 28 days are strongly advised to self-quarantine for 14 days and to undergo the COVID-19 test at the first sign of any flu-like symptoms. Please note that Oudtshoorn Hospital is the official designated testing facility for this purpose.

Schools will also be closed on Wednesday, 18 March 2020 and parents are advised to keep children at home and away from large public areas such as malls, libraries, etc.  

All information can be found on the following websites;, as well as via the official national Toll Free Call Centre 0800 029 999, the provincial call centre 021 928 4102 and the official national WhatsApp Help Service (send Hi to 0600 123 456 on WhatsApp or

These links will also provide further information regarding the procedure for screening and testing. In addition, an official Clinicians’ Hotline is also available via 082 883 9920.