Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize will on Monday evening lead a scientific panel discussion on the new variant of the coronavirus, 501.V2.
Professor Salim Abdool Karim and infectious diseases specialist at the Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Dr Richard Lessels are expected to be part of the panel.
The new variant has seen a surge in infections that have placed additional strain on the country’s healthcare facilities.
In the video below, Minister Mkhize speaks about the variant:
On January 17, over 12 000 new infections were reported, bringing the total number of COVID-19 cases in South Africa to over 1 337 926 infections.
South Africa is currently battling over 202 380 active cases.
#COVID19 Statistics in SA as at 17 January .
Use the COVID Alert SA app to protect yourself, your loved ones and your community. Start using this privacy preserving app today. Add your phone to the fight! Download the Covid Alert SA app now! https://t.co/8YKEqaiiRF pic.twitter.com/BZfc8i6Z4u
— Dr Zweli Mkhize (@DrZweliMkhize) January 17, 2021
Addressing the nation earlier this month, President Cyril Ramaphosa warned that the new variant was more infectious than the first strain and called for increased diligence from all South Africans.
In the video below, the President addresses the nation: