By Staff Reporter
QWAQWA- Delta variant has been blamed for the fast spread of covid-19, a situation that forced President Cyril Ramaphosa to move the country to adjusted alert level four with tougher restrictions on Monday.
Ramaphosa announced this on Sunday during his television address.
All gathering have been prohibited except funeral. Restaurants remain open with limited service only take ways no sitting. Travel of provinces for leisure is prohibited as well as alcohol sale.
He said said schools will close on Wednesday, announcement that was echoed by Minister of education Angie Motshekga who announced on Monday that schools will reopen on July 19.
This will only last for two weeks while monitoring of its impact is made.
“We now have a delta variant; this variant was first detected in India at end of March this year and now found in eighty-five countries around the world. The Delta variant spread like a wild fire in an alarming manner. That variant has now been detected in five of our provinces namely Eastern Cape, Free State, Kwazulu -Natal, Gauteng and Western Cape.
Ramaphosa said the measures taken are not enough to contain the speed and scale of infection that is experienced in this third wave therefore new measures drawn from best international practice have to be put in place.
“Our priority is to break the chain of the transmission by reducing person to person contact.”
While balancing between saving lives and economy Ramaphasa said most businesses will remain functioning in full capacity as long as they observe all the health protocols in their work places.
“Our focus is on limiting social contact while preserving economy and preserving livelihoods. it remains mandatary and compulsory to wear a face mask to covers nose and mouth. It is a criminal offence not to do so.”
Ramaphosa is concerned about the rapid spread of this variant firstly because it is more transmissible than other variants meaning that it is easier to catch through person to person contact.
He said this delta variant is twice contagious and can infect far more people, you can pass it or infect other people without knowing that you have it.
He also attributed the move to an emerging scientific evidence that previously infected with other variant do not have full protection against delta variant and may get reinjected.
“It is much more contagious and the measures we have so far adopted to contain the virus, may no longer be sufficient to refuse transmission. There is also much that we do not know about this variant,” President disclosed on Sunday .