South Africa seems set to go into a full lockdown, as the country’s leaders become more and more panicked about the possibility of the coronavirus spreading through townships around the country.
The country has been coming to terms with the reality of the global coronavirus pandemic for a number of weeks now, with the first infection being confirmed less than three weeks ago. Following that first diagnosis, the disease began to spread rapidly across the country and, at the time of writing, official figures now stand at 402 infections nationwide. According to information from an anonymous source, leaders within the ANC are preparing to completely shut the country down by the end of the week, although there is some speculation about how this lockdown would practically be enforced.
Around the world, there have been over 339,000 patients infected with COVID-19 and more than 14,000 have died as a result, while over 99,000 have recovered from their infections. The worst affected regions, like Italy and Spain have had to go into complete shutdowns to curb the spread of the virus, with people practicing self-isolation and economies grinding to a halt. Now it seems that South Africa will be facing a similar reality.
“A very, very hard lockdown [is coming]. We’ve probably got another four or five days left and I think they’ll start announcing this on Monday, if not Tuesday,” the source said. “By next weekend, we will be in full lockdown here. Only people providing essential services will be able to do their business.”
The source continued to explain the government’s position, saying that their impeding decision to implement a nationwide lockdown stems from the fear of the virus taking hold in South Africa’s massively populated townships, where people live in very close quarters and healthcare services are scarce at best.
“They are so fearful that it takes route in the townships and that it decimates the townships,” the source continued. “The whole plan is try and wipe this thing [out] in 21 days. Twenty-one days is the window and that’s what stats are telling them. They’ve calculated that window, and if they go into a very hard lockdown they might be able to stop this thing.”
Regardless, the time for South Africans to start taking the coronavirus seriously has come and gone and now, if you aren’t practicing self-isolation and social distancing, you are a danger to society. The Essential Millennial team urges our readers to stay indoors and follow good practices and we wish all of our readers good health and safety for the testing times ahead.
The EM news team is currently working on confirming this information with a source that’s willing to go on record, but, with President Cyril Ramaphosa set to address the nation at 19:00 tonight, we will continue to provide updates and give you full confirmation regarding the government’s efforts to tackle this public health crisis.
UPDATE: President Ramaphosa’s address has been delayed to 19:30 tonight.