Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has expressed concern over the spiking number of Covid-19 cases, calling on people observe regulations.
On Wednesday, the country recorded 2,888 new cases, bringing the total number of cases to 757, 144.
123 more deaths were recorded yesterday, with 35 of those coming from Eastern Cape.
Speaking to Bongani Bingwa on Radio 702 on Thursday morning, Mkhize called on South Africans to change their behaviour or face stricter regulations.
“The numbers were coming down after July and August. Before we had about 13,000 cases per day and went down to just about 1000 cases per day but we have seen in the past three or four weeks now the cases slowly creeping up and we are at a point where we’re just passing over the 2000 mark of cases per day,” he said.
“I am very concerned and all South Africans should be very concerned. The real issue is that the numbers should be going down or staying stable at a lower level. People took the messages seriously in the beginning with the use of masks and distancing. At this point it looks like complacency is coming and people think they can just live a normal life.”
#COVID19 Statistics in SA as at 18 November.
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— Dr Zweli Mkhize (@DrZweliMkhize) November 18, 2020
According to Mkhize, the current Covid-19 stats indicated cluster outbreaks in various places, especially in the Eastern Cape.
“There are areas where the numbers are higher than we’ve seen before. There is an increase in the Eastern Cape. If you look at the whole country, almost half of them are in the Eastern Cape and almost half of them are in the Nelson Mandela Metro.”
As a result, the number of Covid-19 deaths were increasing, as well as the number of hospital admissions.
“We are concerned about super spreader events including parties involving students, where they were gathered together in close proximity with no social distancing and no masks, and the use of alcohol.”
Funerals and drinking places have also contributed to the rising number of cases, said Mkhize.
“We will be sending health practitioners to go and have a look at those who don’t comply and be acted upon.”
Mkhize said government was currently not talking about another lockdown, but called on people to observe the regulations.
“It is a matter of concern because a lot of people are mingling and enjoying the festive season. “