Article by: Natalie Müller
KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala has addressed the public today in a press conference, informing the public about the status of the Covid-19 pandemic in the KwaZulu-Natal Province.
Zikalala States that Ethekweni is leading in the rise of Covid19 cases and may see patients who test positive being kept in monitored facilities, as a method of of isolation and will only released once they are confirmed to have tested negative, in an attempt to curb the spread of the virus.
The Province may see an increase in the enforcement of lockdown regulations due to the non compliance by citizens in metropolitans such as Ethekweni, which are contributing immensely to the rise in Covid19 positive cases.
He stated that a little over 95000 people were screened in the province and 480 people have been tested for the virus and the roll out campaign of testing is to intensify within the next two weeks. Testing booths are to rolled out in places such malls, taxi ranks and informal settlements.
He stated that Ethekweni Municipality is responsible for about 77% of the Covid-19 cases, with the premier confirming that 3 patients are reported to be in ICU in KZN today, due to the virus.
The premier warns that there will be an intense increase in levels of law enforcement in the the next two weeks, to help fight the increase in the number of cases, as some citizens are not adhering to lockdown regulations. The premier has indicated that no lifting of regulations will be considered at this point as things are not looking too good for the province.
Zikalala has opened the floor for questions and answers by members of media as room was made for the public to be informed in depth, about the statistics of the KZN province. Based on the questions that were posed by the media, [which also touched on medical staff members who had tested positive for the virus] the premier and his team were able to shed some light on the measures that have been put into place in order to mitigate the spread of the virus in health facilities.
The premier also mentioned that he has commissioned a campaign to be rolled out in informal settlements and transit cares, which will see citizens receive sufficient essentials to help them fight the virus, such as the rolling out of hand sanitisers, food parcels and gloves.
Zikalala has stressed that he wants to utilize the next two weeks in tightening regulations in an attempt to see that the curve is flattened and numbers are reduced in KZN, in preparation of the lifting of the lockdown.
He urges the government at large to continue serving the people of this country, irrespective of their race, religious belief or their political party of choice as the virus we are fighting has no favor and affects all human beings. He has urged all South Africans to come together during this sensitive time to help fight the deadly spread of the Coronavirus.
Premier Zikalala also pointed out that those who have taken this pandemic as an opportunity to exploit the needy, by selling food parcels that are meant for charity, will be held accountable for their actions.
Food parcels are meant to help the less fortunate and the resale of such goods by those responsible to hand them over is deemed as illegal and he has stated that action will be taken against those who are found to be doing so.
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