The farcical winter clothing rules – forcing retailers to sell “crop bottoms” only if they ensure customers wear them with leggings and boots – are not the only poorly constructed coronavirus regulations to emerge from trade & industry minister Ebrahim Patel.

Last week, the Competition Tribunal, which acts as a court, upheld a guilty plea, or “consent order”, from the small Mandini Pharmacy, about 100km north of Durban, which made all of R300 while overcharging for masks in March. It was ordered to donate “essential goods” worth R300 to a child welfare group...

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