By Saturday evening, South Africa had more than 350 000 confirmed Covid-19 cases, the Minister of Health, dr. Zweli Mkhize, in his daily update of the statistics said.
A total of 13,285 additional people tested positive for the virus in the previous 24 hours.
Gauteng at this stage had 36.7% (128 604) of all cases in South Africa, followed by the Western Cape with 24.3% (85 411).
South Africa has so far conducted 2 422 741 tests for the virus, with almost 64% of tests performed by the private sector.
Another 144 new Covid-19-related deaths have been confirmed bringing the combined death toll to 4,948.
The country’s recovery rate stands at 182,230 – meaning nearly 52% of people who contracted the virus have already recovered from the disease.
Most deaths at this stage are still in the Western Cape (2,593). In Gauteng, 956 people died from the virus.
Mkhize also pleaded with South Africans on Saturday not to become virus-free and to relax their vigilance at a time when infections are skyrocketing.
“We see poor or no social distance maintenance in communities. Masks are discarded or not worn properly and there is laxity in terms of regular hand washing.
“This will have a direct effect on the increase in numbers over the next two weeks.”
Mkhize said the government had already deployed every resource to intervene against the spread of the virus. “However, the government cannot do this unilaterally. “Every dear South African must now concentrate on complying with recommendations on non-pharmaceutical interventions,” the minister said.
“We do not have a vaccine or medicine. Our ability to break the cycle of infection rests on our willingness to stay focused and disciplined and take non-pharmaceutical intervention seriously. We can defeat the pandemic together. We have already proved this during the seclusion period.
“It is in the hands of every citizen to reprimand family members, colleagues and friends who refuse to comply with measures that limit the spread of the virus.
Singer tests positive
The popular Afrikaans singer Karlien van Jaarsveld has meanwhile announced on social media that she has tested positive for Covid-19.
“I’m going to be a little isolated in my spare room now. It’s bad for me not to sleep with my baby and hold him and he does not understand it either, but praises God. He is in everything we go through. Now Daddy Joe and the kids can bond nicely, and he can now see that our baby has not slept through since day 1. ”
Van Jaarsveld wrote that she will take a lot of vitamin C and zinc.
“My worst symptom is fatigue. Furthermore, I’m just flu and very okay…! I almost thought I was pregnant again. ”
She asked people not to feel sorry for her and said there are much worse things in life and people to look after.