COVID-19 infections in the Eastern Cape have risen again. The province is currently dealing with just more than 1300 active cases. The Nelson Mandela Bay Metro is an identified hotspot.

The provincial government expects the third wave of the pandemic to hit the province by 14 June 2021.

Premier Oscar Mabuyane says they have used the past few months and the experience chalked up during the second wave to prepare for and mitigate the impact of the third wave in the province.

More than 700 of the 1300 new cases have been recorded in Nelson Mandela Bay.

The government is now redirecting its resources to the affected areas, starting with tracking, tracing and testing for COVID-19.

COVID-19 Pandemic | New infections increasing in the Eastern Cape, amid slow vaccination rate

Premier Mabuyane says all systems are in place in anticipation of the third wave. He has called on citizens to play their part.

“That on its own is not going to be successful – chasing people around. we want people to take responsibility for their lives, we want to work with businesses, NGOs (Non-Governmental Organisation) and social partners to ensure we mitigate [the] effects of this and minimize the impact that this virus has been doing on our people,” says Mabuyane.

Mabuyane says the vaccination programme is in full swing with over 450 000 people already registered for vaccinations.

“We received last week 76 000 additional Pfizer doses.  We’re expecting another 76 000. We’re looking forward to J&J (Johnson & Johnson) because it will be superb for us as a rural province. That one dose helps so that you don’t have to go and come back. You just go once so we hope that J&J will come on board to help us to move with speed,” says Mabuyane.

Other areas of concern regarding the infection rate are the Buffalo City Metro and the Sarah Baartman district.

COVID-19 Pandemic | Nelson Mandela Bay Metro declared COVID-19 hot spot in the Eastern Cape