CR slams corruption, changes school year; 600,000 hospitality jobs at stake; repo rate cut

By Nadim Nyker

  • The SA Reserve Bank has cut the repo rate by 25-basis points. This takes the rate to 3.5%, a four-decade record low, and takes the prime commercial lending rate, to 7%.

Read also: Kevin Lings: SA Reserve Bank cut interest rates by a further 25bps, has scope for more

  • The restaurant sector is in ICU following a nationwide protest, which saw tables and chairs cordon off roads and thousands take to the streets, with the industry in dire straits. Workers have pleaded with government to ease regulations.
  • A staggering 600,000 hospitality jobs will be lost if “Business Interruption” claims aren’t paid. According to Stats SA, income for the tourist accommodation industry decreased by 98% in May 2020.
  • President Cyril Ramaphosa made an urgent address to the nation on Thursday night. “Cabinet has decided today [Thursday] that all public schools should take a break for the next four weeks,” he announced. Schools will close from July 27 to August 24. The President said matric pupils would only take a week off before returning to class on 3 August 2020. “It was difficult to find consensus on the best approach. What everyone does agree on though is that the health, the academic and social development of the learners must remain our foremost concern,” he added. Ramaphosa  stated that the academic year will be extended. “As a result of the disruptions caused by the pandemic, the current academic year will be extended beyond the end of 2020. The Minister of Basic Education will provide details on the management of the remainder of the school year.”
  • The President also slammed corruption. “Since the declaration of the national state of disaster, the Competition Commission has investigated over 800 complaints of excessive pricing,” he said. “It has so far prosecuted or reached settlements with 28 companies, imposing penalties and fines of over R16 million.”

Read also: CR takes hands-on approach to Covid-19 corruption: ‘Consequences will be severe’

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