Monday, 11 January 2021 12:16

Staff Reporter.

Gauteng premier David Makhura says that the return of holidaymakers from the December festive season has led to a sharp increase in Covid-19 cases in the province.

In a media briefing on Monday (11 January), the premier said that Tshwane metropolitan and surrounding areas are now seeing the highest rate of daily infections.

"Tshwane hotspot as a region and as a metro is the centre of (Covid-19) at the moment." In addition to the return of holidaymakers, Makhura said that the increase can also be attributed to matric rage events in December.

An analysis before Christmas found that the largest number of students who attended the rage matric events from Gauteng came from Tshwane, the premier said.

"We already saw that Tshwane was going to be the hardest hit, but we also saw unfortunate events in the run-up to Christmas. Events which were a flagrant violation of the regulations, " he said.

Makhura visited the Steve Biko Academic Hospital on Monday morning after the hospital reported significant pressure due to an increase in Covid-19 cases.

The Gauteng government said that some patients in these hospital are coming from private hospitals, while are others are being referred from outside provinces such as the North West, Mpumalanga and Limpopo.

The provincial government said that it will now erect two additional tents at the hospital to cope with the increasing pressure.

The total number of Covid-19 cases in Gauteng as of 9 January is 328,925, with 267,988 recoveries reported and 6,142 deaths.

A total of 4,033 people are currently hospitalized in both public and private facilities.

The Johannesburg district has reported cases (133,792) and the most deaths to date (2,096). However, Tshwane’s cases are steadily increasing and the district has now reported a total 84,146 cases and 1,747 deaths.