Choppies is considering operating its stores around the clock during the lockdown to help control overcrowding, Mmegi has learnt.
CEO Ramachandran Ottapathu told Business Monitor the group is working on finalising logistics and is also waiting for the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI) to give them the go-ahead.
"We are thinking of operating long hours across all our stores so that people can buy without crowding at the shops. The staff will be working in shifts," he said.
Earlier this week the ministry encouraged retailers to operate longer hours to avoid overcrowding in queues during the lockdown. Officials said supermarket licences do not limit legal operating hours. The advisory is for supermarkets that have capacity and security to open for longer hours.
During this period of extreme social distancing all individuals across the country
President Mokgweetsi Masisi has also ordered through the Essential Supplies and Services Regulations of 2020 that traders shall not increase prices of medical supplies and equipment including sanitisers, gloves, masks and hygiene supplies, pharmaceutical supplies and food supplies.
The exception shall apply only when the increase exceeds previous cost. In that case, only the additional cost shall be allowed in the price increase.