North West Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela File photo: Molaole Montsho
North West Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela File photo: Molaole Montsho

North West school principal tests positive for Covid-19

By Molaole Montsho Time of article published Jun 3, 2020

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Rustenburg – A 56-year-old school principal has tested positive for Covid-19 in North West, the provincial education department said on Wednesday.

The department said the principal went to a doctor on Monday as he was not feeling well. The doctor suggested the man be tested as he was displaying coronavirus symptoms. 

The positive result was returned on Tuesday and the principal immediately entered a 14-day self-quarantine.

North West Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela said she was "shocked" at the news. 

"As the department, we are very much shocked to learn about this news. We are working with the Department of Health, who have advised us to close the school with immediate effect. We will rely on their expert advice throughout this period," she said.

The school would not be opened until all necessary investigations had been concluded, Matsemela said.

Schools in South Africa are expected to resume face-to-face classes on June 8, starting with grades 7 and 12.

According to the North West department of health, there were 271 provincial Covid-19 cases as of Tuesday. There had been an increase of 84 cases, said the department – the highest daily number yet recorded. 

The majority of the cases were related to the mining sector in Rustenburg. 

Health MEC Madoda Sambatha said the increases in the sector were "concerning". The MEC has been visiting mining houses to assess levels of compliance with lockdown regulations.

"The mines have become hot spots for coronavirus in the province and more effort is needed to curb the disease from spreading to mining communities.

"Miners should be screened before they start work and those who come from hot-spot provinces like the Western Cape, Gauteng and the Eastern Cape should be screened and tested before they start work," said Sambatha.

He said mineworkers that tested positive and their contacts should be isolated at government-approved sites. 

Mines that were lagging behind in terms of compliance and case management were ordered to work with the chief directors of district health to ensure compliance.

The Bojanala District had recorded 160 Covid-19 cases, 140 of which were in the Rustenburg municipality area.  

Madibeng municipality recorded 16 cases; Moses Kotane municipality recorded three; and Moretele municipality one confirmed case.

The Dr Kenneth Kaunda District thus far had 82 cases – 18 in the JB Marks municipality and 64 in Matlosana municipality.

Ngaka Modiri Molema District had to date recorded 16 cases – 11 in Mahikeng, two in Ditsobotla, two in Tswaing and one in Ratlou.

The Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District had recorded five cases – three in Lekwa Teemane, one in Greater Taung and one in Mamusa.

African News Agency (ANA)

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