South African minister, wife test positive for COVID-19
South Africa's Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe and his wife are currently in isolation. According to Johns Hopkins University, South Africa now has the world's eighth-highest number of COVID-19 cases at 298,292.
South Africa's Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Gwede Mantashe, has tested positive for COVID-19. Mantashe and his wife, who has also tested positive, are in isolation. The minister will continue to work from home, a statement from the Cabinet said.
This was the third test Mantashe had taken since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. "The minister has directed all members of his private office in government to also test," the statement said.
According to a Johns Hopkins University tally, South Africa now has the world's eighth-highest number of virus cases at 298,292, which represents nearly half of all the confirmed cases on the African continent. The country has so far reported 4,346 COVID-19 deaths. It has more cases than the UK, which according to the data, has 292,931 confirmed cases.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa this week said many more virus infections have gone undetected despite the country conducting more than 2.2 million tests, by far the most of any African nation, reports say.
The country has also banned alcohol sales that has triggered debate among South Africans as the government steps up efforts to reduce pressure on hospitals amid a rapid increase in infections.
Ramaphosa on Sunday, blamed the resumption of alcohol sales last month for burdening hospitals and clinics with related injuries, violence and trauma.
He went on to outline preventive measures, including a nighttime curfew and mandatory mask-wearing when in public.
Ramaphosa also slammed citizens who have continued to hold social gatherings, including parties and overcrowded funerals, saying they had contributed significantly to the rapid spread of the virus.