News & Analysis: South Africa

Ramaphosa asks all South Africans to help to avoid 50,000 COVID-19 deaths this year

“President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced the immediate re-banning of alcohol sales, while maintaining the current, national level three lockdown. He also announced the opening of parks for exercise and the implementation of a national curfew between 9pm and 4am, which will come into effect from Monday night. Wearing cloth masks in all public spaces will now be mandatory and enforceable by law, to limit the spread of the coronavirus.”

via Mail & Guardian

Premier of South Africa’s Gauteng province tests positive for COVID-19

“The premier of Gauteng, South Africa’s most populous province, said on Friday he had tested positive for COVID-19, as new confirmed infections in the country hit a record high.”

via Reuters

‘We’re holding COVID-19 tests for hospital patients’

“It’s not because we don’t have the money or anything. It’s just that the whole world is trying to buy the same test kits we are trying to buy. Suppliers can only supply us a limited number.”

via Sunday Times

COVID-19 pandemic in Africa is now reaching ‘full speed’

“The coronavirus pandemic in Africa is reaching ‘full speed’ and it’s good to prepare for the worst-case scenario, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention chief said Thursday, after a South African official said a single province is preparing 1.5 million graves.”

via AP News

Mkhize warns the ‘surge’ has started while doctors struggle with scarce resources

“Health Minister Zweli Mkhize told parliamentarians that the surge in South Africa’s COVID-19 outbreak is here. Meanwhile, doctors at Johannesburg clinics are struggling to find hospital beds for patients ill with COVID-19. In the Eastern Cape, Nelson Mandela Bay has only two ambulances for COVID-19 patients and a hospital overflowing with contaminated laundry.”

via Daily Maverick

Head of Gauteng health ‘war room’ and five others test positive for COVID-19

“Six people from the Gauteng department of health’s COVID-19 war room have tested positive for the virus. Among them is the head of the department, Prof Mkhululi Lukhele.”

via Sunday Times

‘There. Are. No. Beds.’ – Doctor tells terrifying truth of South Africa’s COVID-19 crisis

“We have probably by this week run out of capacity to treat people. And it makes you feel useless as a doctor to have to say that to someone. But there’s nothing else we can do.”

via Sunday Times

Saving Eastern Cape from COVID-19 existential threat

“Hospitals around the province are full. Both public and private hospitals are battling an increase in patients and a decrease in staff numbers as COVID-19 takes a deadly toll on overstretched health workers.”

via Daily Maverick

Africa free-trade vision clouded by virus and pace of talks

“AfCFTA was supposed to take operational effect on Wednesday, July 1, but the timeline has slipped, under the complications caused by the COVID-19 outbreak but also the slow pace of negotiations themselves.”

via The East African

The ABC triangle: Putting the AfCFTA, Brexit, and COVID-19 to work for Africa

“The entry into force of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) on May 30, 2019, the official withdrawal of the U.K. from the European Union (Brexit) on January 31, 2020, and the COVID-19 pandemic in which we are currently mired. If policymakers act fast to seize the opportunities that this ‘ABC’ triangle of events offer and reset U.K-Africa trade relations, a win-win partnership can emerge.”

via Brookings Institution