Eastern Cape following same Covid-19 'pattern' as Western Cape, says Mkhize as SA cases climb to 37,525

03 June 2020 - 21:34 By Matthew Savides
Health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said on Wednesday he was worried about the increasing number of Covid-19 cases recorded in the Eastern Cape.
Health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said on Wednesday he was worried about the increasing number of Covid-19 cases recorded in the Eastern Cape.
Image: GCIS

The government is worried about the increase in Covid-19 cases in the Eastern Cape, as cases across the country climbed to 37,525 by Wednesday night.

Of those cases, 4,526 were in the Eastern Cape - which was third behind the Western Cape (24,657) and Gauteng (4.567) in terms of the number of cases recorded. 

A week ago, the Eastern Cape had recorded 3,047 cases, meaning there have been an additional 1,479 cases in the past seven days.

"We note the same pattern that drove up the outbreak in Western Cape is building up in the Eastern Cape. The two provinces now consist of 78% of all positive cases," said health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize in a statement on Wednesday night.

He said "additional attention" was being directed to Eastern Cape to "ensure the province can adequately respond to limit escalation of infection".

In comparison, the Western Cape has seen 7,764 new cases in the last week. Gauteng’s cases increased by 1,400 from 3,167 on May 27 to 4,567, while KZN's cases climbed by 521 from 2,186 to 2,707 over the same period.

There were 37 new Covid-19 deaths across SA, seven of which were in the Eastern Cape, 29 in the Western Cape and one in KZN. This means that there have now been 792 deaths from the respiratory illness recorded across SA.

The Western Cape saw 206 fatalities in the last week (from 391 on May 27 to 597 on Wednesday), while the Eastern Cape recorded 25 deaths (from 70 to 95), Gauteng two (31 to 33) and KZN five (49 to 54) over the same period.

The provincial breakdown of cases, deaths and recoveries was on Wednesday provided as:

  • Western Cape — 24,657 cases, 597 deaths, 13,696 recoveries;
  • Gauteng —  4,567 cases, 33 deaths, 2,169 recoveries; 
  • Eastern Cape —  4,526 cases, 95 deaths, 2,123 recoveries;
  • KwaZulu-Natal — 2,707 cases, 54 deaths, 1,248 recoveries;
  • Free State — 319 cases, 8 deaths, 123 recoveries;
  • North West — 314 cases, 1 death, 59 recoveries;
  • Limpopo — 200 cases, 3 deaths, 145 recoveries;
  • Mpumalanga — 137 cases, 0 deaths, 86 recoveries; and
  • Northern Cape — 93 cases, 1 death, 33 recoveries.

Five cases are unallocated.

The figures were based on 785,979 tests, of which 24,445 tests were reported in the past 24-hour cycle.


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