Covid-19: Cyril Ramaphosa 'in good health' after meeting Rev Kenneth Meshoe

22 March 2020 - 19:32 By ZINGISA MVUMVU
President Cyril Ramaphosa says no one he has met recently has tested positive for Covid-19. File image
President Cyril Ramaphosa says no one he has met recently has tested positive for Covid-19. File image

President Cyril Ramaphosa's office said on Sunday he is continuing with his duties despite having met the Rev Kenneth Meshoe five days ago — who is undergoing tests for the coronavirus.

Meshoe had participated in a religious gathering in the Free State where five international guests subsequently tested positive for the virus.

The leader of the African Christian Democratic Party has since been tested for Covid-19. He disclosed this publicly on Sunday.

Meshoe was among leaders of political parties represented in Parliament who met Ramaphosa in Cape Town on Tuesday.

The presidency reiterated Meshoe's statement that he has been asymptomatic since his participation in the religious gathering of about 200 people.

“The Presidency welcomes Rev Meshoe’s adherence to the testing protocol and wishes him well as he awaits his results.

“The president himself is in good health and is observing the announced protocols as stringently as he can while performing his duties.

“At this point in time there is no cause for concern about the president’s health or reason for the president to be tested. To the best of the president’s knowledge, no person with whom he has recently had contact — including Rev Meshoe — has symptoms of or tested positive for the virus.”

Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu told reporters on Sunday evening: “We know that Reverend Meshoe has confirmed going for a test, so we will await the test results.“

“Let us give him and his family that privacy for now.” 

“But as a public figure he will obviously indicate to all of us what is the outcome of his testing.”

Ramaphosa's spokesperson, Khusela Diko, said: “The president is in good health, a lot of questions have been asked about whether he will be going for a test because Rev Meshoe was in contact with him.” 

“There is absolutely no need for that. As protocol indicates, he will only make that decision once we get guidance following Rev Meshoe's test results.”

Mthembu added: “We will only make that decision for the president to test once there are symptoms, so far there are no symptoms from the president that necessitate that he must have any tests.

“But we can assure you that if there is evidence that indicates that the president must undergo any test, and any of us [who have been in contact with him], we will not wink an eye, we will do so.”