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COVID-19
SA COVID-19 cases jump by 8 773, bringing total infections to 196 750
5 July 2020, 9:05 PM

South Africa’s cumulative number of confirmed coronavirus cases has jumped to 196 750 as the country reported 8 773 new cases in the last 24 hours, according to the Department of Health.

It also reported a further 173 COVID-19 related deaths, bringing the death toll to 3 199. The number of recoveries is at 93 315 translating to a 47.4% recovery rate.

Below are the latest SA COVID-19 cases:

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The Western Cape still has the most confirmed cases and deaths, with 69 531 and 2 066 respectively.

38 083 tests were done in the last 24 hours,  with the accumulative number of tests done in the country since the virus outbreak at 1  830 161.

Below is the health department’s statement on the latest information:

 

 

ANC
Paul Mashatile’s wife dies, ANC expresses hurt
5 July 2020, 7:12 PM

The wife of the African National Congress’ (ANC) Treasurer General Paul Mashatile – Manzi Ellen Matshatile, has passed on.

In a statement, the governing party expresses sadness, noting that the death comes a week after his mother was laid to rest.

Mrs Mashatile passed on after a long illness, according to a statement from the ANC. The party has urged the public to give the family some privacy.

“We call on the public to give the family privacy during these difficult times. To the family we extend our condolences at this difficult times and hope the family will find the strength to pull through,” reads the statement.

The Congress of the People (Cope) has also relayed its condolences to the Mashatile family.

In a statement, the party says, “ While death does not discriminate, but every time it affects those close to us, we are never ready for it. That’s why we say to cde Paul Mashatile, be strong. We know your pain and we know that this pain is permanent and never pass. We wish you strength and fortitude to go through this.”

The date for her burial is yet to be announced.

Below is the ANC’s statement on the matter:

 

Angie Motsekga
Not all grade R learners will be returning to school on Monday
5 July 2020, 5:35 PM

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga says government has reconsidered its plans for the return of additional grades and only grades six and 11 will be required to return to class on Monday. The grade Rs who will return to class are those from schools that have COVID-19 safety measures in place.

The Minister says schools that are not yet ready for the return of Grade Rs must submit plans for their future return. Grade six , 11 and the returning Grade R learners will join Grades 7 and 12 who returned last month.

Motshekga says 4% of schools nationwide were forced to close and re-open because of the coronavirus, since classes resumed for grades seven and 12 on June 8th. She was speaking in a virtual media conference from Pretoria.

Motshekga says this amounts to 968 of the country’s 26 000 schools. The Minister says less than point one percent of learners were affected by coronavirus outbreaks since classes resumed and three learners have died, some of whom were not at school.

She says the majority of coronavirus cases registered at schools are due to non-compliance of the health and safety regulations, such as the wearing of masks, social distancing and constant hand sanitising.

Motshekga says the statistics mirror the general picture nationally when it comes to the pandemic.

Motshekga says after careful consideration and consultation with all Basic Education Department stakeholders, it was agreed that water provision and sanitation receive urgent attention.

Motshekga has assured all parents and learners that they will all have access to clean water.

“To date, we can report that additional 2174 tanks were delivered, with Rand Water assisting with the filling of tanks, also the defence force also participated in the process and again we have a lot of water boards and municipalities have worked with us to ensure a sustainable water supply and appropriate sanitation in our schools.”

Motshekga’s full briefing is below:

 

Taxi
Bloemfontein taxi drivers say the industry’s being neglected since lockdown
5 July 2020, 4:29 PM

Taxi drivers in the Bloemfontein say the taxi industry has been forgotten since the start of the country’s lockdown. They say the industry has been hard hit by regulations as they are not allowed to carry full passenger loads. They also complain that they have not received any relief.

46-year-old Tseliso “Lela” Motsokobi wakes up at three in the morning to be among the first taxis to pick-up commuters. As he loads his taxi, he warms himself with a cup of coffee, preparing himself for the day of hustling.

The father of five children has been a taxi driver for the past 10 years, and he says the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the taxi industry to its knees. Motsokobi says they are now struggling to maintain their families due the reduced salaries. But, he says, he loves his job despite its challenges.

“Its very very hard, because we are loading only 10 people and that is very little money. You check the distance and we have to pour petrol for that. Our children are suffering and I had to send them back home. I am staying at a rented house,” says Motsokobi.

Taxi drivers say while they have to look out for the safety of their passengers, they are still expected to make the same profit they did before the lockdown. They say the pressure is high.

“We suffer a lot. Our passengers are fighting for their rights and drivers too. They want sanitisers we don’t have sanitisers. They demand social distancing and in the taxi we can’t create a one metre distance.”

“Our owners demand money like before its lockdown now we can’t get the money we used, because we don’t load 100 %.”

Commuters sympathise with taxi drivers, but maintain that their safety comes first.

“They are struggling because they have to be paid.”

“They are in trouble since lockdown started totally there has been some fair payments and increase all over but not with taxi drivers.”

Taxi drivers have appealed to government to subsidise the industry as its key to the economy.

In the video below, is the report on the Free State taxi drivers:

The taxi industry has been complaining about the impact of lockdown rules on operators’ pockets. In June, Gauteng industry players went on a one-day strike, calling on government to increase its R1.1 billion relief package meant for the sector. They argue that the money is too little.

 

COVID-19
SA remains Africa’s COVID-19 epicentre as infections surpass the 460 000 mark
5 July 2020, 4:01 PM

African Union Member States have recorded 463 306 coronavirus cases infections to date. The data collated from the 54 countries in the continent shows 11 086 deaths and 222 304 recoveries.

South Africa remains the epicentre of the pandemic on the continent. The country also has the highest number of infections in the Southern region recording a total of 187 977 cases of the 194 870 recorded in the region.

South Africa also has the highest number of deaths with fatalities sitting at 3 026. In the Northern region, Egypt carries the most number of cases at 74 035 of the 110 669 total cases. In the Western region, Nigeria accounts for 28 167 cases of the total 82 644 infections.

In Central Africa, Cameroon carries 12 592 of the total 35 969 cases whilst in Eastern Africa, Sudan accounts for 9 767 cases of the total 39 154 cases.

World Health Organisation African Region is urging countries to remain vigilant as things gradually return to normalcy.

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