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In two weeks the number of Covid-19 cases in Nelson Mandela Bay have increased tenfold as authorities pleaded with residents to wear masks and stop socialising. 


With 75,000 jobs lost in the metro, the city’s business chamber has warned that another lockdown would be disastrous.

With the number of coronavirus cases in Nelson Mandela Bay up tenfold in just two weeks and hospitals filling up, Port Elizabeth’s business chamber has warned that another lockdown would be dire for the Eastern Cape’s largest metro.

It took 14 days of what authorities described as mass disobedience, in October, about a month after the country moved to Level 1 for Nelson Mandela Bay to have a tenfold increase in coronavirus cases, as a massive outbreak saw cases increasing, sometimes with up to 500 cases a day, from 349 on 19 October to 3,092 on 4 November.

This week the city’s Business Chamber raised the alarm that the local economy, which had already shed 75,000 jobs this year, could ill afford another lockdown.

At one of the city’s busiest state facilities, Livingstone Hospital, 10 doctors had to deal with the mass admission of patients, with the Department of Health admitting this week that they are in urgent need of more hands to fight the current outbreak.

“Nelson Mandela Bay is currently the only place where we are seeing this. There are no other obvious hotspots,” Professor Lucille Blumberg, the head of the Public Health Surveillance and Response Unit at the National Institute of Communicable Diseases, said.

This comes as the Minister in the Presidency, Minister Jackson Mthembu, said this week that President Cyril Ramaphosa intended to address the nation on the state of the coronavirus outbreak in the country...

This article written by Estelle Ellis appeared the The Daily Maverick on 7 November 2020, first published in Daily Maverick 168. Read the full article at:

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