Next two weeks will be critical for Gauteng as COVID-19 infections rise: Makhura

SABC News Gauteng Motorists - Next two weeks will be critical for Gauteng as COVID-19 infections rise: Makhura

Gauteng Premier, David Makhura, says that the next two weeks will be critical as the number of people infected with COVID-19 continues to rise daily. Speaking at a roadblock at the Grasmere Toll Plaza, south of Johannesburg, Makhura says authorities have been encouraging motorists to comply with health protocols and to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The roadblocks on major highways are targeting people returning from other provinces following the festive holidays.

Gauteng officials deeply concerned about COVID-19 regulations not followed:

Makhura says he’s encouraged that the majority of motorists are complying, but has warned against complacency as the second wave continues to bite.

“We’re already feeling it, the daily cases of 4 000; we’ve exceeded that already. We also have exceeded 3 000 hospital admissions already. Those are indications that the situation in the province is going to be difficult. We have seen also with the number of people who are succumbing to COVID-19, the number is increasing on a daily basis. We want to say to the people of our province who are returning here, we want to call on them to comply with all the health measures.”

Gauteng traffic police say traffic volumes on the increase as holidaymakers return:

AngloGold Ashanti hospital

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has criticised the Gauteng Provincial Government over what it says is wasteful spending related to the refurbishment of the AngloGold Ashanti hospital, west of Johannesburg.

The mining company donated the hospital to the Gauteng government.

The DA’s Jack Bloom says R500 million meant for urgent COVID-19 beds has allegedly been spent on the hospital, which has not yet been completed. DA officials visited the hospital and they are now demanding accountability.

Bloom says, with the current COVID-19 infections claiming thousands of lives, the money could have been used at other facilities who are in desperate need of high care.

“It really is a scandal that the Gauteng provincial government has spent half a billion rand on a hospital in the far West Rand that is quite inaccessible. It’s not even completed, only 56 of the planned 176 ICU beds have been finished. It doesn’t have any staff. I don’t think it will see any COVID-19 patients in the near future or at all. I think it’s an expensive white elephant.”

The provincial Infrastructure Development Department is yet to respond to the claims.

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