Published in furtherafrica.com
The exceptional and temporary measures related with COVID-19 were updated by Presidential Decree no. 212/20, of August 7th. This regulation has revoked the measures previously implemented by Presidential Decree no. 184/20, of July, 8th.
Through Presidential Decree 212/20, the declaration of Public Calamity is still in force in Angola, for a period of 30 days, being subject to revaluation if deemed necessary. The key measures implemented by this new Presidential Decree, that differ from the previous measures, are the following:
Individual Protection Measures
- For the individual protection measures is mandatory the use of masks inside private vehicles and the masks must simultaneously cover the nose and mouth, otherwise it is considered to be incorrectly used.
- Also, whenever possible, client service must be provided through previous scheduled appointments.
- It is recommended that citizens remain at home (except for reasons of urgent necessities) – this duty is now applicable for all citizens in all Angolan territory, not just for territories where there are sanitary fences.
Duty to report suspicious cases
- Temperature control at the entrance of facilities is now mandatory and the responsible entities, when the identification of suspicious cases, must prevent the entry in the facilities and communicate immediately the local health authorities.
- The borders of the Angolan territory remain closed, and subject to sanitary control as defined by the relevant authorities. In addition to other formalities, citizens intending to enter Angolan territory must carry out a RT-PCR test, at least 72h before boarding, with a negative result.
- In the provinces where there is a sanitary fence (Province of Luanda, and Cazengo Municipality – Province of Cuanza-Norte), Security and Defense forces must reinforce monitoring, as well as in neighboring provinces or municipalities.
- Authorized movements / exits of areas in sanitary fence are subject to previous testing for SARS-COV-2. For authorized official work delegations, the authorization for exit of territory in sanitary fence must be granted for the minimum number of persons required to carry out the work.
- All citizens, community agents and local health authorities have a duty to report all acts of violation of the sanitary fence.
- Angolan and foreign citizens (who are residents in Angola) entering Angolan territory from abroad, who do not test positive for SARS-COV-2 on the pre-boarding test, must be placed under home quarantine. These citizens are required to sign a Statement of Responsibility (to be defined by the Health Authorities). Home quarantine shall only be finished by the issuing of a statement by the Health Authorities, which will only occur after a negative test for SARS-COV-2. This test will be made at least 7 days after the home quarantine begins. Health Authorities may determine that there are no conditions to carry out the home quarantine; in this event, citizens shall be placed under institutional quarantine.
- Non-resident foreign citizens entering Angolan territory from abroad, who do not test positive for SARS-COV-2 on the pre-boarding test, must be placed under institutional quarantine.
- Citizens who test positive for SARS-COV-2 who do not present any symptoms must be placed in home isolation, as defined by the Health Authorities. These citizens are required to sign a Statement of Responsibility, to be defined by the Health Authorities. Whenever the Health Authorities determine that there are no conditions to carry out home isolation (specifically, due to the lack of physical distance, health issues of the presence of vulnerable citizens at home), citizens may be placed under institutional isolation. In the event a citizen is placed under home isolation, the people living in the same house are also required to observe home quarantine rules. Home isolation shall only be finished by the issuing of a statement by the Health Authorities, which will only occur after a negative test for SARS-COV-2.
- Neighbors and members of residents’ commissions have a duty to communicate all violations of the home quarantine and home isolation they are aware of.
- Home quarantine and home isolation regimes must be in force on August 15th, 2020.
Special protection of vulnerable citizens
Vulnerable citizens are subject to special protection. Vulnerable citizens include: citizens over 60 years old, citizens with chronic risk diseases, pregnant women and children under 12 years old. Vulnerable citizens are not required to perform on-site work (and may be subject to telework regime). This is not applicable for citizens who are responsible for children under 12 and obese persons, who must perform work for 50% of the normal working period, in the terms to be defined by the employer.
Public and private services
- Public services must function between 8 am and 3 pm, with the presence of 50% of the work force in the Province of Luanda, and 75% in the other Provinces (with the exception of specific public services).
- Private services must function between 6 am and 4 pm, with the presence of 50% of the work force in the Province of Luanda, and 75% in the other Provinces.
- The school activities remain suspended and sports activities, also, remain suspended (with the exception of individual sports activities in open spaces, which may be carried out between 5.30 am and 8 pm).
- Commercial activities of goods and services may be carried out between 7 am and 7 pm, with observance of biosafety rules (already included in the previous measures).
- Restaurants and similar establishments may function between 6 am and 9 pm, with observance of biosafety rules (already included in the previous measures).
- Access to beaches, public pools and other similar areas is forbidden until October 15th, 2020.
- The cinemas remain closed in the Province of Luanda, but may be open in other provinces until 9 pm (with observance of safety rules, such as, mandatory use of masks, physical distance and use of 50% of capacity).
- Night clubs remain closed.
- Religious activities are permitted, except for the Province of Luanda and Municipality of Cazengo.
- Parties outside of home are not allowed – the entities responsible for organizing parties may be subject to fines.
- Collective transports of people may function between 5 am and 10 pm (with 50% of its capacity, in Luanda, and 75% in other areas). The violation of these regulations may result in the apprehension of the vehicle, suspension of the license (if applicable) and the application of a fine.
- Moto-taxi services may function between 6 am and 10 pm. The use of mask is mandatory for both the driver and the passenger.
- Sanitary fences in the Province of Luanda, and Cazengo Municipality – Province of Cuanza-Norte must be in force until September 8th, 2020.
Article by Marco Correia Gadanha
Marco Correia Gadanha is a partner of the Portuguese law office MC&A. He is specialized in legal advice to international transactions. Marco has extensive experience of legal practice in Portugal and in the Portuguese-speaking African countries. Since 2008, he has practiced mainly in the areas of labor and litigation, assisting national and international clients in these and other matters, namely corporate law, especially in Portugal, Angola and Mozambique. He graduated at the University of Coimbra in 2005 and he holds post-graduations in Labor and Angolan Law.