Third wave : Ramaphosa should address the nation, says expert

By Kelly Jane Turner Time of article published May 28, 2021

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South Africa has now “arguably” entered its third wave and the country is at a point where some response is required, according to senior researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) Dr Ridhwaan Suliman.

The country’s test positivity rate has increased to more than 10% which is an indicator that the “rise is real” he says.

“We are probably at a point where some response or intervention is required from the government. I think we need to go and look back at the tools that we have available to stop or limit the spread of transmission. I think at this stage, it’s important to limit the large gatherings,” said Suliman.

Data released by the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) found that the Northern Cape had the highest percentage of people testing positive which was 25%, the Free State was 18% and the North West was 16%.

The health institute said that since the end of the second wave, increases in hospital admissions have been observed in Gauteng, Northern Cape, North West and Free State provinces.

Over 4 400 new Covid-19 cases were recorded in the country yesterday, bringing the cumulative cases to 1 649 977.

The country has been on lockdown level one for three months and the last time President Cyril Ramaphosa held a “family meeting” was on March 28.

Suliman said an address from the President would be useful to increase awareness and alertness amongst the public and community at large.

“I think people look towards the lockdown levels as a guideline for how to adjust their behaviour. We are currently at level one and perhaps maybe just a message to indicate that the risk has increased could probably go a long way at this point,” he said.

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