The Department of Health says it has observed a decline in Covid-19 transmissions in South Africa over the past week.
This is evidenced by a reduction daily cases, a steadily decreasing positivity rate (19% today from a high of 36% in at the peak of the second wave), and promising evidence of downward deflection of admission numbers, it said.
"We are hoping that this decline in numbers is going to bring the much-required reprieve to our overwhelmed health facilities, both in the public and private sector.
"We are closely monitoring this to inform our process of recommending the review of some of the restrictions that are currently in place."
The Department said it was grateful to all South Africans for playing their role in mitigating the devastating effects of Covid-19.
"We do, however, continue to caution that the transmission rate is still very high and we need to ensure that it is reduced to an acceptable level before we can ease restrictions.
"It is therefore imperative that we do not grow fatigued and continue to focus on the things we know provide protection – the strict wearing of masks, social distancing and regular sanitisation of hands and surfaces."
On Friday (22 January), South Africa reported 11,762 new cases with a total of 62,251 tests conducted. This represents a 19% positivity rate.
The cumulative number of Covid-19 cases identified in South Africa is now 1,392,568. 575 more Covid-19 related deaths were reported, bringing the total deaths in the country to 40,076.