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Phaahla shies away from talk of more lockdown restrictions

ANC national executive member Joe Phaahla at the national social cohesion summit held at Kliptown yesterday(Thursday) Soweto 05.07.2012 Picture: Ofentse Ramaboa

ANC national executive member Joe Phaahla at the national social cohesion summit held at Kliptown yesterday(Thursday) Soweto 05.07.2012 Picture: Ofentse Ramaboa

Published Nov 26, 2021

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Siyabonga Mkhwanazi

Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla has stopped short of saying whether stricter lockdown measures will be announced when the National Coronavirus Command Council meets on Sunday.

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Phaahla said the increase in infections has called for measures to be taken, however he would not say if they will impose more restrictions.

President Cyril Ramaphosa had moved South Africa to level 1 a few months ago.

But the rise in Covid-19 infections has called for more action by government.

Phaahla said they were concerned because about 10 days ago the infection rate was about 200 cases and this has now moved to 2 800.

He said they wanted to ensure that they contain the spread of the virus ahead of the festive season.

He said it was too early to say whether there will be stricter lockdown measures to be announced.

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“Stricter lockdown? Not necessarily anything concluded. There is still going to be the weekend, between tomorrow and Sunday, meetings between players, structures of government including the Natjoints which is the head of all departments including the security cluster, communication and all departments of the state. They will be looking at that and the coronavirus council made up of the ministers, the deputy president and the president will meet,” Phaahla said.

“From our side at this stage we are examining the situation. We will make some recommendations in terms of the fact that there is definitely a spike in infections. We will make recommendations on health measures,” he said.

However, Phaahla would not indicate the recommendations they would make.

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He said in the past they knew the measures that were used to prevent the spread of the virus.

But they are concerned about the rise in infections and they have to act.

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