TOP politicians and senior public servants in South Africa have been infected with COVID-19 as government grapples to contain the spread of the deadly virus.
The coronavirus pandemic has spread to at all nine provinces, with the countrywide death toll from the virus reaching more than 3 600 as of Thursday.
The number of cumulative COVID-19 cases in South Africa currently stands at 224 665, along with 3 600 deaths and 106 842 recoveries.
Earlier this week, North West Co-operative Governance MEC, Gordon Kegakilwe died as a result of a COVID-19 related illness after he was admitted to a Vryburg hospital on Sunday.
He was transferred to a medical facility in Klerksdorp on Monday but suffered a heart attack on arrival.
Cooperative Governance Minister, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, has sent condolences to the family of her North West MEC.
The virus also claimed the life of ANC KwaZulu Nata spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu, who died after contracting COVID-19 two weeks ago.
On Thursday, Western Cape Premier Alan Winde announced that he was currently self-isolating after having tested positive for COVID-19.
Winde received his results on Wednesday after he started developing mild flu-like symptoms on Sunday.
He went for testing on Monday, because he’s a Type 2 diabetic and over the age of 55.
“I will be isolating myself for the next 14 days. I have done this before – this is the third time that I’ve gone into isolation during this pandemic and again I will continue to manage and run things from home. Using technology, I will continue to chair the cabinets, meet the president and the PCC this week,” he said.
“My blood glucose levels were also higher than usual this morning, determining the decision to take due precautions and rest. A new date for the digicon will be communicated in due course.”
North West Premier Job Mokgoro has also been admitted to hospital after testing positive for COVID-19.
Mokgoro announced at the virtual Special Provincial Executive Council (EXCO) meeting held on Tuesday that he had tested positive for Covid-19 and was in self-isolation.
Mokgoro tested for Covid-19 following the passing on of Kegakilwe, MEC for Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs.
The embattled Buffalo City Metro city manager Andile Sihlahla has also tested positive for COVID-19.
Meanwhile, the Gauteng Department of Health confirmed that six members of the Gauteng Health COVID-19 War Room have tested positive for COVID-19.
Among those positive includes the Head of the Department, Professor Mkhululi Lukhele.
As reported by the BBC, Dr Matshidiso Moeti, World Health Organization (WHO) director for Africa, said: “With more than a third of countries in Africa doubling their cases over the past month, the threat of COVID-19 overwhelming fragile health systems is escalating.”
While it took nearly 100 days for Africa to reach an initial 100,000 cases, it took only 18 days for that to double to 200,000. It doubled again to 400,000 cases over the next 20 days.
And on 8 July, total cases passed 500,000.
(Compiled by Inside Politics staff)