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Covid-19: Phumzile Van Damme says 2021 will be a repeat of 2020 unless people change their behaviour

The DA's Phumzile Van Damme.
The DA's Phumzile Van Damme.
Image: Esa Alexander

DA MP Phumzile Van Damme says SA will likely experience more outbreaks of Covid-19 infections in 2021 if people don't change their behaviour.

She tweeted this on Monday after an announcement by the health ministry that SA had surpassed one million cumulative Covid-19 cases. SA is currently battling the second wave of infections and a new variant of the virus which is said to spread faster than the virus in the initial wave of Covid-19.

2021 will be a continuation of 2020 in terms of Covid-19. I sense some think the changing of the calendar will bring respite. We are in the midst of a second wave. There’s a mutation. There can be predictions but not definitively so. The only control we have is on our own behaviours,” she tweeted.

Van Damme encouraged people to act responsibly.

“You control if and how you will be infected and if and how you may infect others. That’s the only variable you have some measure of control over at this stage — you and how you protect yourself and others. Exercise this responsibility to yourself and others. You’re not indestructible.” 

In his address to the nation on Monday, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that SA would be put back on level 3 of the lockdown, and announced the reintroduction of a ban on alcohol sales.

Ramaphosa also announced that the curfew would be extended from 9pm and 6am. 

“Under the strengthened regulations, the sale of alcohol from retail outlets and on-site consumption of alcohol will not be permitted. The prohibition of consuming alcohol in public spaces like parks and beaches remain. Distribution and transportation will be prohibited,” said the president.

According to a latest report from the health ministry, the Western Cape had the highest number of Covid-19 related deaths on Monday.

Regrettably, today we report a further 336 Covid-19 related deaths: Eastern Cape 109, Free State 8, Gauteng 22, KwaZulu-Natal 49 and Western Cape 148. This brings the total to 27,071 deaths,” said the report.

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