Public statement and press release: Covid-19 Lock Down and Worsening Food Crisis in the Country


Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, President, Republic of South Africa

Mrs Thokozile Didiza, Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, South Africa

Mr Ebrahim Patel, Minister of Trade and Industry, South Africa

Mrs Nosiviwe Noluthando Mapisa-Nqakula, Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, South Africa

Mrs Barbara Creecy, Minister of Forestry and Fisheries and Environmental Affairs

Mrs Angie Motshekga, Minister of Basic Education

Ms. Gloria Serobe, Chairperson of the Solidarity Fund


Re: Covid-19 Lock Down and Worsening Food Crisis in the Country

While we commend the government’s efforts to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic, the lock down has not been accompanied with adequate socio-economic mitigation measures. South Africa is one of the most unequal countries in the world and with major food stress amongst big parts of its population. About 14 million people went to bed hungry before the lock down. With social grants inadequate to meet the food needs of households (17.6 million), about 4 million informal sector workers (including street traders, domestic workers, waster reclaimers, car guards etc) living from hand to mouth suddenly losing income generating opportunities and high structural unemployment at about 5.9 million posed to jump to about 9 million, the country is facing a food crisis involving about 30 million people. This is a big challenge. Read more