South Africa: Today’s latest news and headlines, Monday 2 August 2021

In the latest news in South Africa on Monday 2 August 2021, experts are warning of a food security crisis in KZN and Gauteng as a result of the recent riots.

South Africa: Today’s latest news and headlines, Monday 2 August 2021

Stay up to date with the latest news stories and headlines in South Africa on Monday 2 August 2021.

The first Monday of a new month, with old issues for South Africa to sort through. We’re still reeling from the loss of TV star and producer Shona Ferguson on Friday. South Africans far and wide expressed their sadness and poured out their hearts in support of his wife, actress, producer, and businesswoman Connie Ferguson.

Julius Malema felt so strongly about Ferguson’s death that he appeared to take a dig at Netcare Milpark Hospital, where Ferguson died.

TODAY’S LATEST NEWS IN SOUTH AFRICA, Monday 2 August

‘Milpark is overrated’: Malema slams hospital after Shona Ferguson’s death

Julius Malema, the Commander in Chief of South African political party Economic Freedom Fighters has been trending on Twitter after calling Netcare Milpark Hospital overrated. His views on the private hospital come after Shona Ferguson, South African actor and producer passed away in the institution on Friday 30 July from Covid-19 related complications.

Julius Malema of the EFF is one of the thousands of people who have shared messages of condolence to the Ferguson family following the death of Shona Ferguson, a South African actor, director, and film producer. Heading online, Malema dedicated a post to the family while remembering Ferguson for his numerous achievements.

“The EFF sends its heartfelt condolences to Shona’s wife, Connie Ferguson, and their family. We wish her all the strength she needs to go through this difficult period. May his soul rest in perfect peace. Salute!” reads a tweet from the EFF Twitter page.

Malema also went on to speak about Netcare Milpark, the hospital where Ferguson took his last breath on Friday this week. Malema subliminally blamed the institution for Ferguson’s passing:

“It looks like this Milpark is overrated,” he wrote in his tweet while also adding a ‘broken heart’ emoji.

Food shortages: KZN, Gauteng SUPPLY CRISIS expected ‘within weeks’

Food security remains a concern in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and Gauteng after violent riots and looting led to supply shortages and opportunistic price hikes in affected areas. As a result, the Democratic Alliance (DA) has called for a task team to be established in order to ensure that residents in the devastated provinces don’t go hungry. 

Annette Steyn, the DA’s Shadow Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, said in a statement on Sunday 1 August that her opposite number in National Government, Thoko Didiza, needs to get a handle on issues relating to the impact of the riots on food security. 

She said that millions of South Africans have been left unemployed with little to no income after the riots crippled industry in the two provinces, and said that a host of surviving retailers have resorted to price hiking in areas where they have a monopoly as the only source of food store available.

“While President Ramaphosa has extended the R350 grant, this may not be enough to cover basic commodities in provinces affected by the recent unrest, and history has shown that government incompetence severely delays this financial relief from landing in the pockets of those who need it,” she said. 

WATCH: 2.8 million vaccine doses donated by the US arrive in SA

The first batch of Pfizer vaccines donated to South Africa by the United States of America arrived in the country on Saturday, 31 July. Acting Minister of Health Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane was at the airport to receive the consignment and said that rest of the 5.6 million doses would arrive early next week.

The US government announced its vaccine donation to South Africa and other countries on the continent on 28 July. It forms part of President Joe Biden’s pledge to donate 500 million vaccine doses across the globe.

Kubayi-Ngubane received 2.8 million Pfizer vaccine doses at O.R. Tambo airport in Johannesburg on Saturday – the first batch of what is the largest vaccine donation in the world to date, which is being facilitated by COVAX.

“The next batch will arrive on Tuesday [3 August] to conclude the 5.6 million doses donation,” said the acting health minister.

“This donation will help protect South Africans from the ravages of the COVID-19 virus and will support continuing efforts to build back the South African economy,” said Todd Haskell, who headed the US Mission.

Thousands of SA primary schools ‘unable to fully reopen’ on Monday 2 August

The resumption of primary school learning on Monday 2 August is now facing some serious disruption – after thousands of facilities across the country confirmed that they ‘cannot fully reopen’ while the current lockdown laws are in place.

It’s understood that the demand for all learners to be seated one metre apart is still too much for some classrooms. Schools with large volumes of children in each learning group cannot accommodate everyone, and a large number of educational centres won’t be able to welcome all students back in one go.

Trouble is brewing, though. As The Sunday Times report, teaching unions have been told that ‘a full capacity return for primary schools’ should continue – even if some places aren’t able to maintain physical distancing between pupils.

Seven arrested for defrauding the Department of Health of millions

Seven people were arrested after an internal investigation revealed more than R8 million was paid to service providers while no evidence could be found whether the service providers rendered the actual services.

The Hawks, Captain Christopher Singo said the seven people, two government officials, and five company directors, were arrested on Friday by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation in Bloemfontein.

“They are expected to appear before the Bloemfontein Regional Court on Monday, 02 August 2021 where they will be facing charges of fraud, forgery, uttering, money laundering, and corruption.”

Singo said during the regulatory audit in the Department of Health, the audit team from the Auditor-General requested information on certain payments to service providers and subsequently queried the procurement processes that were followed.

Princess Charlene: Monaco royal to remain in SA until end of October

Princess Charlene has revealed that she won’t be able to return to her husband and children in Monaco until the end of October. The Princess has been recovering from a serious surgery she underwent on her ear in January, with an inability to equalise at high pressure leaving her grounded in SA. 

Speaking to 702, Charlene said that despite only returning to her home country of South Africa at the beginning of the year with plans to stay for just shy of a fortnight, her recovery has been arduous and she has been prevented from flying home. 

“Initially I was supposed to be here for 10 to 12 days, unfortunately, I had a problem equalising my ears,” Charlene explained, adding that she can’t expedite her recovery. 

“I found out through the doctors that I had a sinus infection and quite a serious one. So, it’s taking time to address this problem that I’m having,” she said. 

“I cannot force healing, so I will be grounded in South Africa until the end of October.” 

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HOROSCOPE TODAY

Free daily horoscope, celeb gossip, and lucky numbers for Monday 2 August.

Source : The South African More   

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COVID-19: SA ‘not out of the woods yet,’ warns expert

There is also growing concern over the rising COVID-19 positivity rates in the Western Cape as well as KwaZulu-Natal (KZN)

COVID-19: SA ‘not out of the woods yet,’ warns expert

While the third wave of COVID-19 infections may arguably be over, a health expert has however warned that the country’ is not yet on the mend as positivity rates in several provinces are still worryingly high.

There is particular concern over the Western Cape as it is now the epicentre of the virus, due to a spike in cases, in just a matter of days.

“The Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal are still in an upward trajectory, whereas Gauteng has turned the curve and on a downward trajectory, but what we can expect to occur is that those numbers are going to remain stable, if not increase over the course of the next two to three weeks,” Wits University’s Professor Shabir Madhi said in an interview with eNCA.

As of Sunday evening, 1 July 2021, the country has recorded 2 456 184 cases of the respiratory disease, after an additional 8 791 new infections were picked up.

The Western Cape has the most number of active cases with over 35 000, followed by KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) then Gauteng.

Madhi added that another important measure to consider is the positivity rate, of which the Western Cape and KZN are recording a rate of about 33%, which is way too high.

“That figure is concerning because we want it to go downwards and at least be less than 10% and we are far away from that. So we are far out of the woods, other than Gauteng, Free State and to some extent, North West”

Wits University’s Professor Shabir Madhi

Not enough people vaccinated yet

According to Professor Madhi, one key focus should be administering more vaccines to the elderly as they are the most vulnerable – making up half the number of deaths from COVID-19.

“We need to make a concerted effort to ensure that those that do have underlying medical conditions and people above the age of 60, get their first dose into their arms as quickly as possible. We want at least 90% of those people getting vaccinated before we see some significant impact, with the vaccines reducing death and hospitalisation,” Madhi added.

Madhi says just 65% of that age group has been vaccinated, which is still far from the goal of at least 90%.

Source : The South African More   

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