I address you once again to share and give an update on where our Nation stands in the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Worldwide, confirmed Coronavirus infections continue to increase, with over 600,000 lives lost to date. Global recoveries from the virus stand at slightly over 8,1 million, up from over 6,8 million recorded up to last week.
On our African continent, cases of infections are rising at an alarming pace. By yesterday, Africa had recorded over 721,000 cases, up from 443,412 recorded cases from the previous week. More than 15,100 deaths have been reported so far, with recoveries at 380,253 cases.
Our country, as of this morning, had recorded 1,713 cases, up from 985 cases recorded by last week. This means the number of positive cases increased by over 600 in just one week. During the same period, the number of deaths rose from 18 to 26. Meanwhile, recoveries rose from 328 to 472 in the same week. However, for the first time local transmissions now exceed imported cases, the former standing at 872, and the latter at 841. Another worrisome development is that more and more, cases of local transmissions are being reported at places of work. Covid-19 is thus no longer a problem out there, far and beyond our borders; rather, it is now here amongst us and in our communities.
South Africa, which is both our neighbour and our major trading partner, ranks fifth globally on number of infections, after the United States of America, Brazil, India and Russia. The affinities and intense, multi-layered interactions between our two countries mean we have a very serious situation on our doorstep. This is coupled with an upsurge recorded in all our other neighbouring states.
Therefore, this sobering reality means that we can no longer be complacent, and that requires urgent and decisive measures.