Health Minister, Dr Zweli Mkhize has commended the private and public initiative by the Eastern Cape Health Department and Volkswagen South Africa.

The Minister was giving the keynote address at the official handover of a 66 000 square metre temporary medical facility in Nelson Mandela Bay in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday.

The facility is set to accommodate 3 300 patients once fully operational.

Mkhize says the facility will alleviate pressure off the public health fraternities.

“A total of 3 300 beds coming along with oxygen reticulation. All of this is a very important combination of what our needs are at this point. This has now been established in record time.”


South Africa currently has 101 590 coronavirus cases and more than 50 000 recoveries.

“Our total recoveries, at 53 444, assure us that more than 50% of people who have been infected have recovered and we continue to be optimistic that the number of recovered patients will continue to rise.”


There are more than 4 000 coronavirus patients across hospitals in South Africa.

“As it stands, South Africa has 2 888 patients who are in isolation in general ward; 262 patients who are in high care; 539 patients who are in ICU; 218 patients who are on ventilators and 566 patients who are on oxygen.”

Mkhize has urged South Africans to continue taking preventative measures.

“The models are theoretical. Whatever the models are, it is not the models that determine where we end up. It is our conduct and determination to fight the pandemic that leads us to the situation we find ourselves in. “