By Hassan Isilow
JOHANNESBURG (AA) - South Africa’s Health Ministry has asked students who attended end of year parties, also known as the Rage, over the weekend to self-quarantine for 10 days.
Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said in a statement late Sunday that several students who attended the 2020 Matric Rage parties held in parts of the country had tested positive for COVID-19.
“We encourage parents to take their children who attended Rage for testing as soon as possible,’’ Mkhize said.
Final year secondary school students usually attend parties to mark the end of their school year.
“We warn South Africans that this is a clear illustration that large gatherings which involve the consumption of alcohol are a major risk and continue to undermine our efforts to contain the spread of the virus,’’ the country’s top doctor said.
The minister further stated that as much as the government is working to contain the spread of the virus, parents too should set limits on what kind of events their children attend to curb the spread of the pandemic.
Mkhize said all those who attended the parties are now regarded potential COVID-19 contacts.
South Africa, has the highest number of COVID-19 cases on the continent, with 814,565 confirmed cases and 22,206 deaths. The African country is the 18th most affected globally.
Last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa warned that the country could face a second wave of the pandemic if people do not take necessary measures to protect themselves.
“There is now clear evidence of a resurgence of infections in parts of our country, which, if not confronted decisively and directly, could lead to great suffering and death,” Ramaphosa said in an address to the nation Thursday night while providing an update on the government’s progress in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.