South Africa has recorded  9 010 new coronavirus cases bringing the total number to 1 346 936. In a statement, the Department of Health also reported a further 344 COVID-19 related deaths.

“Eastern Cape 66; Free State 1; Gauteng 63; KwaZulu-Natal 91; Mpumalanga 12; Northern Cape 13, and Western Cape 88. This brings the total to 37 449 deaths.”

The recoveries now stand at 1 117 452, representing a recovery rate of 83%.

The latest coronavirus stats:

 

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Visiting KwaZulu-Natal today, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize expressed concern that the infections in the second wave of the pandemic could surpass the numbers seen during the festive season.

He says the main area of concern is Gauteng where people will come back to work which could bring a resurgence of the virus.

“I will be moving up to a few other provinces. I will be visiting Limpopo and Gauteng because that’s really where we see the numbers have gone up. If you look at Limpopo, the numbers there are more than what they were in the previous peak in June. If you look at Gauteng, the peak is almost the same as what it was in June. We were just worried about the fact that moving from the holidays people are going to be moving up to Gauteng and that’s going to give us huge amounts of a resurgence in that particular part of the country.”

Minister Mkhize meets scientists to discuss the new COVID-19 variant:

Meanwhile, Chairperson of the COVID-19 Ministerial Advisory Committee, Professor Salim Abdool Karim, says there is evidence that the new variant of the coronavirus in South Africa, known as 501Y.V2, is 50% more infectious as it binds more readily to human cells. However, there is no evidence that it causes a more severe COVID-19 infection.

Professor Karim was part of a panel hosted by Health Minister Zweli Mkhize on the latest regarding the new COVID-19 variant.