The South African Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, said the worst of the Covid-19 crisis in the country was over. 

“We can say we are over the surge. The plateau has started. Western Cape it’s been over two months. KZN is also now decreasing. That’s indicative of a promising time,” said Mkhize.

However, Mkhize reiterated the Covid-19 regulations, saying: “Let’s focus on the containment measures: use of masks, washing hands regularly and sanitising.”

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize File picture: African News Agency (ANA)

As of Monday, the country had 609,773 positive Covid-19 cases and a death toll of 13,059, as well as 506,470 recoveries. 

The KwaZulu-Natal province had a total of 104,619 confirmed cases and a provincial death toll of 1,673.

“At this point we don’t have a shortage of PPE (personal protective equipment). We have a challenge in administration of PPE. We are addressing that. We are not disagreeing with the issues being raised. These must be resolved on the ground,” Mkhize said. 

“The reports of corruption are devastating. People are taking advantage of their authority over resources. We condemn corruption and want to work together with law enforcement to root out corruption.” 

On Friday, the director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said at a media briefing in Geneva, Switzerland, that if health-care workers in South Africa died due to corruption, it would equate to murder. 

South Africa – Durban – 06 August 2020 – Health Minister Zweli Mkhize visited Clairwood Hospital during his two day visit in KwaZulu Natal Province.
Picture: Doctor Ngcobo/African News Agency(ANA)

“Any level or type of corruption is unacceptable. However, corruption related to PPE lifesaving, for me it’s actually murder because if health workers work without PPE, we’re risking their lives,” said Tedros.

“And that also risks the lives of the people they serve,” Tedros said, responding to a question on the alleged PPE tender scandal in South Africa. 

– ANA; Editing by Yaron Blecher