The best interests of the child in the face of COVID-19 travel restrictions: Analysing the rights of children and parents [Discussion of CD v Department of Social Development (5570/2020) [2020] ZAWCHC 25 (14 April 2020)]

Author: Angelo Dube

ISSN: 1996-2193
Affiliations: BA LLB LLM MBL LLD Professor, University of South Africa
Source: Stellenbosch Law Review, Volume 33 Issue 2, 2022, p. 176 – 186


On 20 March 2020 the President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, announced a national lockdown as an interim response by the South African Government to the COVID-19 pandemic. This followed a declaration of a state of national disaster by the Minister for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. As part of the 21-day national lockdown, the Minister issued regulations aimed at stemming the rise in infections across the country. Part of the restrictions imposed by the regulations was to limit free movement which included regulating crossprovincial travel without a permit. In CD v Department of Social Development (5570/2020) [2020] ZAWCHC 25 (14 April 2020), the High Court of South Africa was confronted with an application in which the parents of two minors requested permission to travel across provinces to fetch their minor children and return them to their place of residence. The issue before the court was whether the regulations permitted the movement of children between parents and their caregiver.