President Cyril Ramaphosa has reportedly announced that South Africa would reimpose stricter lockdown measures as the country is facing the threat of the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As per reports, South Africa has officially become the worst-hit nation on the continent, reporting over 1.65 million cases and 56,363 deaths due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
President Ramaphosa stated that four provinces of the nation have already been fighting a third wave of COVID-19 infections. One of these provinces is the Gauteng province, which includes cities like Pretoria and Johannesburg, housing the largest population.
Ramaphosa reported that the number of infections have been witnessing a sharp rise in several parts of the country. Further adding that it might only be a matter of time before South Africa “as a whole” would enter a third wave.
Meanwhile, hospital entries have also been rising, claim reliable sources.
Under new restrictions, which are set to come into effect from 31st May 2021, non-essential establishments, such as fitness centers, restaurants, and bars, would need to close by 10:00 pm local time.
The new lockdown rules have extended the curfew time by an hour to commence at 11:00 pm and end at 4:00 am.
Reportedly, gatherings, including political as well as religious events, have been limited to 250 people outdoors and 100 people indoors.
On 30th May 2021, South Africa reported 4,515 new COVID-19 cases in a 24-hour period. President Ramaphosa claimed that the positivity rate in COVID-19 tests has now become a cause for concern, reports suggest.
He added that it is crucial for “as many people as possible” to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in order to delay the spread of the coronavirus and prevent the country from reaching the peak of the third wave.
Experts have warned that the third wave, which is set to arrive with winter in the Southern Hemisphere, might be worse than the previous waves in South Africa.