South Africa’s health minister and his wife have tested positive for coronavirus as cases continued to surge in the country, reported Reuters.
“I wish to inform the public that this afternoon my wife Dr. May Mkhize and I have tested positive for COVID-19,”Health Minister Zweli Mkhize confirmed in a tweet on late Sunday.
He said he tested for COVID-19 on Saturday after he started showing some mild symptoms.
“I am now in quarantine at home and both my wife and I remain optimistic that we will fully recover from this virus,” Mkhize said.
He went on to urge the people of South Africa to continue adhering to health protocols such as wearing face masks, social distancing and washing or sanitizing their hands. He said the country has made significant strides in its fight against the pandemic.
He warned that despite a reduction in the number of positive cases, there always remains a risk of a second wave.
Mkhize has been at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic. He said he would utilize the quarantine period to take rest and come back recharged and energized to improve the health services of the country.
John Nkengasong, Director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), wished Mkhize and wife a speedy recovery.
He said the Africa CDC supports the South African minister’s appeal to not neglect public health measures.
South Africa is currently the 12th most-affected with the highest number of cases in the African continent. Around 1,662 new COVID-19 cases were reported on Sunday, taking the total number of confirmed cases to 703,793 with 18,471 confirmed deaths. Over 600,000 people have so far recovered from the virus.
Over 4.5 million people have been tested for the virus in the country since it was first detected in March.