Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Professor Mosa Moshabela, says imposing stricter lockdown restrictions in Gauteng won’t help reduce the number of COVID-19 infections.

Premier David Makhura indicated on Monday that a stricter lockdown could be announced soon as the number of new cases and hospitalisations continue to soar.

Gauteng accounts for more than 60% of the active cases in the country, with Makhura describing the situation as a house on fire.

Welcoming military medics who will be assisting in Gauteng’s public hospitals, he said the province is in desperate need of help.

Military medics deployed to Gauteng hospitals:

The City of Tshwane has also expressed concerns about the steep rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in Pretoria.

Executive Mayor Randall Williams says there are now 17 000 active cases in the city.

“This number is particularly concerning as during the second wave the City experienced its peak at approximately 16 000 active cases before witnessing a decline in cases. Looking at current trends, it is now becoming clear that active COVID-19 cases are increasing rapidly in the current third wave. New confirmed daily cases are increasing sharply, ranging between 2 100 and 2 300 cases per day,” says Williams’ Spokesperson, Sipho Stuurman.

However, Moshabela believes there’s no reason for drastic measures.

The professor says the Gauteng government is showing frustration and panic, which will create anxiety among members of the public.

“I don’t necessarily think that South Africa even Gauteng should be going any further restrictions than it has from a regulatory perspective. You want to fight the COVID-19 outside of hospitals in the homes. You want to fight this in the community at work in other places schools and so forth. I feel like the regulations that we have at the moment are enough to bring the situation under control,” Moshabela says.

However, Health and Social Security System Specialist at Wits University, Alex van den Heever, says special restrictions may be required in the province.

“We have to do more than the deployment of the military staff. We have to deploy the staff of the Gauteng department of health as well. Staff can’t stand idle that is the key thing. They should be redeployed to the other facilities that have been managed fully commissioned. The 500 alternative beds technology hospital put up in at Chris Hani put the staff there and get that hospital going on properly and possibly considering special restrictions for Gauteng,” says Van den Heever.

Below are the latest SA stats: