The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng has raised concern at the “suspiciously low” active cases being reported by the Department of Health.

DA Shadow Health MEC Jack Bloom said the current COVID-19 figures  are providing little guidance to combat the virus.

According to the latest figures from the National Health Department, there are only 283 active cases in Gauteng, the lowest in the country despite having the highest population.

“Gauteng officially recorded COVID-19 figures are becoming more and more ludicrous, providing little guidance in tracking the epidemic to prevent hotspots developing further,”   said Bloom.

DA Jack Bloom

Speaking to The South African Bloom argued that it is simply not possible to have such few active cases when there have been 1887 new infections confirmed in the last ten days.

Furthermore, there are 1624 COVID-19 patients in Gauteng hospitals according to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD).

The Gauteng Health Department used to give a daily breakdown of cases by district, but has not given any update since 4 November 2020.

Bloom maintained that it is important that accurate figures are available for the districts so that any spike in cases can be combatted quickly.

“We can’t fight an epidemic without accurate information. We need to know how many active cases there are in each particular district and intervene aggressively if there’s a spike upward,” he said.

The shadow MEC has attributed the low figures to failure to monitor the infections properly, he maintains that the province can not have the lowest active cases yet it is the most populous province.

He has called on acting Health MEC Jacob Mamabolo to act urgently to ensure that real infection statistics are available and monitored closely to manage this epidemic properly.

The Department has had its fair share of problems since the firing of Health MEC Bandile Masuku following a report by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) on allegations of corruption related to Personal Protective Equipment(PPE) procurement in his department.

To date the cumulative total of Covid-19 cases is 769 759 with 711 195 recoveries and 2270 new cases identified.

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize revealed that 58 deaths have been reported: Eastern Cape 28, Free State 13 , Gauteng 8 and Western Cape 9, bringing the total to 20 903 deaths.

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Presh JM Reporter

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