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Mzwandile Masina's Covid-19 plea — 'Hospitals are full, our front line workers are overstretched'

04 January 2021 - 09:30 By cebelihle bhengu
Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina. File photo.
Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina. File photo.

Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina has again urged residents to ensure their safety and that of those around them as SA continues to battle the second wave of coronavirus infections.

“Please keep safe fellow South Africans. Hospitals are full and our front line workers are overstretched,” Masina tweeted on Sunday morning.

Last week, Masina said SA needed a “family meeting” to announce stricter lockdown regulations. He blamed citizens for “failing the government.”

“We need a family meeting to shut down the country. Our people are dying and this is causing more harm and devastation while some are leaving [sic] a normal life. I’ve said it. Say what you can but we are failing government as citizens, period.”

Ekurhuleni has been identified as one of the Covid-19 hotspots in Gauteng. Others are Johannesburg, Tshwane and the West Rand.

The provincial government urged residents to adhere to the regulations and help prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

There is a glimmer of hope among South Africans, particularly health workers, after health minister Zweli Mkhize's announcement on Sunday that they will be among the first to receive the Covid-19 vaccine.

Mkhize was addressing the media regarding the government's vaccine rollout strategy during a virtual briefing. He said government aims to vaccinate 67% of the country's population by the end of this year.

Health workers, essential workers and individuals with comorbidities will be prioritised with the vaccine secured through the Covax programme.

“At this stage, we have secured the doses which will be acquired through Covax which will ensure we immunise 10% of the population through this mechanism. In line with the president's statement, we expect the process will have delivered the vaccine by the end of the second quarter.

“The funds to pay the outstanding amount after the deposit paid by the Solidarity Fund, around R1.8bn, have been allocated,” said the minister.