Strength during the lockdown to flatten the curve

Dear UP Community,

I am quite sure that we are all filled with concern, anxiety and fear as the lockdown approaches. I am also quite sure we are all trying to stay calm and plan as best as we possibly can for this unprecedented situation.

Let us remember that the lockdown is an important intervention to stop the growing infections and to flatten the curve. We must work in the best interest of the health of our society and the world. If it works because we all cooperate and observe the necessary restrictions, we will have made a decisive contribution to restoring health and normality.

Let us use the lockdown period to do important things that will reduce fear, anxiety and trepidation. For those who can work remotely, please continue to do so. Enjoy family time if you live with your family. You could, for example, read, write, listen to music, meditate, play games, exercise or do whatever else you enjoy doing within your home.

I am grateful, and we should all be, for our colleagues who will be performing essential services during the lockdown period.

Stay safe and observe all the health precautions that experts and health authorities continue to advise us to. Above all, adhere to the lockdown restrictions and help reduce infections. We do not know when it will be safe to resume our normal activities, but I believe it will be alright in the end.

Let’s continue to support each other during this difficult and exceptional time. Our ability to actively address social concerns, empathise, give back and uplift humanity during this trying time is part of how we make an impact and live THE UP WAY.

I also urge all staff and students to read more about COVID-19 and stay informed through regular status updates via trusted sources, primarily:

World Health Organization

National Institute for Communicable Diseases

If at any stage, any member of the University community suspects that he or she may have been exposed to the virus and feels ill, such person is advised to isolate him/herself and to contact a medical doctor or the 24-hour UP Operational Management and Crisis Centre on 0800-0064-28 or 012-420-2310, or the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) on 0800-029-999 before going to medical centres. 

Don’t forget to visit the UP website for regular updates and to follow us on our social media platforms.  

Warm regards,


Prof Tawana Kupe

Vice-Chancellor and Principal

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