#Other Countries : South Africa, the country hardest-hit by the new coronavirus on the continent, recorded a record 24,000 new infections on Friday, bringing the total to more than two million, according to official figures.
Friday’s figures set a daily record, surpassing the previous record of 21,980 recorded in January 2021.
The total number of deaths is 61,332.
South Africa is bearing the brunt of the third wave that President Cyril Ramaphosa described as “a huge resurgence of contamination” due to the highly contagious delta variant.
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The president announced new restrictions in the country on Sunday: closing schools, extending curfew (now from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m.), restrictions on gathering indoors or out – except at funerals, up to 50 people. Get involved with – and ban the sale of – alcohol.
He painted a very dark picture of the situation: “Our health services are working to the extreme of their possibilities (…), there are very few beds available in intensive care”.
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Shops remain open to provide maximum support for the economic activity of the country, whose GDP fell 7% in 2020.
South Africa, whose economy was already in recession before the pandemic, imposed one of the world’s strictest restrictions in March 2020.
The vaccination campaign began with difficulty in February, and so far only 3.2 million people out of a population of 59 million have been fully vaccinated.