Western Cape's skyrocketing coronavirus numbers spark concern

18 May 2020 - 12:10 By Unathi Nkanjeni
The Western Cape has recorded the majority of South Africa's confirmed Covid-19 cases.
The Western Cape has recorded the majority of South Africa's confirmed Covid-19 cases.
Image: 123RF/Jarun Ontakrai

The Western Cape's growing number of confirmed Covid-19 cases has sparked concern among South Africans.

The province has recorded 60% of SA's confirmed Covid-19 cases, according to the latest stats released by health minister Zweli Mkhize on Sunday.

Members of the SA Defence Force (SANDF) were deployed across the country on March 27 2020. Soldiers took to the streets to help enforce lockdown regulations in a bid to curb the spread of the coronavirus. TimesLIVE spent some time on duty with the SANDF in Alexandra.

Mkhize announced a daily record of 1,160 new cases, which took the total in the country to 15,515.

Deaths number 264 and the total recoveries 7,006.

“We remain concerned about the developments in the Western Cape, with the total cumulative cases now comprising almost 60% of the national [number of] cumulative cases,” said Mkhize.

“The new cases from Western Cape comprise  76% of new cases from the past 24-hour cycle,” he said.

Last week, while hinting about possibly moving to level 3 lockdown, Mkhize said Cape Town may need tighter restrictions.

“We are dealing with a dynamic situation and will monitor and evaluate the progress in various parts.

“It must be expected there may be areas where it might not be the best way to just let everything get back to normal. We might need to consider heightened interventions of lockdown in various forms.”

On social media, many expressed concern, saying the national coronavirus command council should tighten the lockdown regulations and prioritise the province's health.

Here is a snapshot of some comments.