Ramaphosa To Speak Amid Covid-19 Spike And Looting

President Cyril Ramaphosa will address South Africa Sunday night amid rising Covid-19 infections and violent protests linked to the #Free Zuma campaign.

“The president’s address will follow meetings of the National Coronavirus Command Council, the President’s Coordinating Council, and Cabinet which are taking place during the course of the day,” said the Presidency in a statement Sunday.

Meanwhile, violent protests that have seen haulage trucks torched, roads blocked and shops looted began in KwaZulu-Natal have spread to Gauteng.

Protesters have ignored strict alert level four Covid-19 restrictions that ban gatherings.

The third wave, driven by the Delta variant, shows no signs of slowing down.

On Saturday, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) said: “Today the institute reports 21 610 new Covid-19 cases that have been identified in South Africa, which brings the total number of laboratory-confirmed cases to 2 179 297″.

The NICD said the increase represents a 28% positivity rate.

“As per the national department of health, a further 265 Covid-19 related deaths have been reported, bringing total fatalities to 64 138 to date.”

With vaccination progressing at a snail pace, Ramaphosa is likely to extend the restrictions that include a ban on sit-down meals at restaurants for another two weeks.

Only about 3 million of SA’s 60 million population have had their first jab.

“As South Africa rolls out its Covid–19 vaccination programme, government and social partners are continuously monitoring infection, treatment and patient recovery rates as well as compliance with health regulations and other prevention measures,” said the Presidency.

Ramaphosa, who has called for the full might of the law to tackle violent protests, is expected to reiterate the message.