South Africa is officially on lockdown for the next 21 days. The Mining News and Inside Mining team is delighted to let our valued readers know that it will be business as usual during the 21-day lockdown.On Monday President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that amid increasing cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), the country would go into a 21-day lockdown to reduce the spread of the virus. Between Thursday 26 March 2020 and 16 April 2020, all South African will be required to stay at home except those identified to be working in the essential services including health workers, emergency personnel, and those in security services among others. While the lockdown will undoubtedly have dire consequences for most businesses, Mining News and Inside Mining readers will be happy to know that it is business as usual. This means that we will continue to publish content across all our platforms from the safety and comfort of our homes. During his announcement, the president mentioned that “firms that are able to continue their operations remotely should do so”.
Prior to the official lockdown, social distancing was already actioned within the office environment with avoiding close contact. Hand sanitiser was also being used and staff that were able to work from home, could do so.Its encouraging to see that the mining industry is being proactive about the lockdown and reducing the spread of COVID-19. In recent weeks we’ve seen various stakeholders engaging in discussions on how to ensure that employees in the mining industry are protected whilst also ensuring that the industry is not brought to its knees as a result of the lockdown. Some mines will placed on temporary care and maintenance while others that fall within the essential services category will continue to operate – however at reduced capacity. Operating mines will also take the necessary precautions to ensure that employees are not exposed to contracting the virus. Although this is a very uncertain time, it is also exciting in the sense that now is the time to take advantage of technology in the digital age and make it work for us. This digital age also creates countless opportunities for us to reach our audiences even though we are working remotely. For advertisers, it means coming up with exciting concepts that would grab the audience’s attention. All of this is possible with technology. With that said, we urge everyone to stay at home and avoid unnecessary travel during the lockdown. While our valued readers are at home, the Mining News team will also be staying and continue to update our website and social media platforms to keep everyone in the loop about events taking place in the mining industry. Remember to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.