The Presidency on Tuesday denied that it had begun drafting regulations for a state of emergency or that President Jacob Zuma had appointed a team to do so.
This follows media reports that draft regulations in terms of the State of Emergency Act 64 of 1997 were being drawn up for the first time in 20 years.
The sister publication of News24, Rapport, stated on Monday that it had seen the regulations, which would grant any security official permission to “act within his or her own judgment, arrest people, search property, or cut communication channels such as cellphones or the internet.”
According to the Constitution, the President can declare a state of emergency when war, invasion, revolt, natural disasters or other dangers threaten the nation's safety.
“The Presidency is not working on regulations for a state of emergency,” said the statement from Zuma’s office.