Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize. Video: Sihle Mavuso

WATCH: Zweli Mkhize dismisses as fake news link between 5G technology and Covid-19

By Sihle Mavuso Time of article published Apr 1, 2020

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Durban - Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has dismissed as fake news ongoing rumours that the rollout of 5G networks is linked to Covid-19 infections.

Mkhize’s dismissal comes as the country continues to be gripped by various conspiracy theories from how the virus is spread and how blacks and non-travellers are immune from it. 

The fake news suggests that Wuhan, the Chinese city where the virus was first recorded last December, turned on its advanced 5G technology in November. So according to the fake news, the virus was caused by the technology. 

Answering questions from the media on Tuesday in Durban, Mkhize said 5G was a technology issue while Covid-19 was a virus. He said at this difficult time, people must use facts instead of fake news to fight the pandemic gripping the country.

At the same media briefing, Mkhize announced that as government they were worried that it was beginning to also pick up infections in densely populated townships like Alexandra in Johannesburg and Khayelitsha in Cape Town. 

As a result, he said there will soon be an increase in the testing of people in the country. 

“The approach we are going to be taking is that we are going to be unveiling, in the next three days, additional mobile testing vans which would be deployed to a number of provinces, particularly the ones where the problem is the biggest. That is the Western Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and Free State… The approach we are taking, as the president has indicated, is we are going to increase the number of field workers who are going to do the tracking and testing,” Mkhize said. 

At the moment there are 5 000 field workers, Mkhize said, and the number would soon be doubled as the government steps up efforts to fight the spread of the virus. At the heart of this increase is teaming up with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to work with state nurses.

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