South African President Cyril Ramaphisa has reportedly warned people to be prepared to live with the deadly coronavirus pandemic for a year or more and also cautioned them to follow social distancing measures and wear face masks even after lockdown restrictions have been eased. He added that precautionary measures will help curb the spread of virulent virus.
According to the reports, South Africa has reported over 12,000 confirmed cases and more than 200 deaths. The country has imposed nationwide lockdown since March 27.
The President reportedly announced last month a five phased plan to gradually ease the lockdown restrictions to fight the spread of coronavirus. As per reports, presently the country is witnessing its level 4 under which limited businesses are allowed to open, there is a curfew between 8 pm and 5 am and a ban on alcohol and liquor sales.
With more than half of the nation’s confirmed cases that account for over 10,600 infections, Cape Town and its surrounding Western Cape province have reportedly turned into South Africa’s coronavirus hotspot. According to figures released as of May 13, Western Cape province has at least 5,621 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and over 206 deaths have been registered so far.
As per reports, South Africa eased lockdown measures, that allowed an estimated 1.6 million people to return to work in selected mines, factories, and businesses. Further, Western Cape province with its poor, densely populated townships, reported cluster outbreaks, majorly in Cape Town. With the highest number of cases of the novel coronavirus in the entire continent, South Africa has recorded 12,074 infections and 219 total deaths in the region.
Health Minister, Zweli Mkizhe, said while speaking at the press conference that the concentration of cases in Cape Town may see the city return to a stricter lockdown and containment efforts to contain the pandemic. “That is what is going to happen in Cape Town. Where the higher rate of transmission is, it is going to require that there are even stricter restrictions,” said Mkhize.