Health Minister Zweli Mkhize says government appreciates the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) continued guidance in contemplating the easing of the nationwide lockdown.

The WHO has released six criteria for lifting a coronavirus lockdown.

These are adequate control of the transmission of the virus, tracing, testing and treatment systems, minimising the risk of resurgence and preventative measures in public spaces. Others are managing the importation of the virus, and education and empowerment of communities. South Africa has 14 355 confirmed coronavirus cases with 261 deaths and 6 478 recoveries.

WHO Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says the coronavirus pandemic highlights the urgent need for all countries to invest in strong health systems and primary healthcare.

Mkhize says as government prepares itself to deal with a spike in infections as the lockdown regulations are eased, 376 quarantine sites have been identified across the country comprising of 30 823 beds.

Meanwhile, 439 559 tests have been conducted so far. 18 004 of those were done in the last 24 hours, the Health Department has confirmed on Saturday.

The Eastern Cape and Western Cape made up 91% of the new cases.

Below is a graphic of confirmed COVID-19 cases

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WHO recommendations on easing lockdown restrictions