Covid-19 in SA: Death toll now at 848 as number of cases surge past 40 000

News24 – 4 June 2020

The Covid-19 death toll has hit 848, after 56 more people died – 54 of whom were from the epicentre Western Cape.

The number of cases rose by 3 267 to 40 792. The number of recoveries is 21 311.

The government is set to appeal a court judgment handed down this week which declared the lockdown regulations for Levels 3 and 4 unconstitutional. This came as the government also announced that a state of disaster will be extended until 15 July. Here is what the courts found in the ruling.

Just a few days after the government eased lockdown regulations, Cape Town hospitals have reported seeing an increase in trauma-related cases. This is said to be putting an unwanted strain on healthcare facilities, which are under the weight of Covid-19 patients.

The government has argued that taxes it has not recouped during the tobacco ban is outweighed by the potential harms of selling tobacco products during the Covid-19 pandemic. The government is set to argue this point in a court case where the Fair Trade Tobacco Association is trying to get the sale of tobacco reinstated.

The consignment of PPEs earmarked for school in KwaZulu-Natal that mysteriously disappeared have reappeared. Media reports quote a KZN Department of Education spokesperson saying that someone will be held responsible for the incident.

The Western Cape government will pay private hospitals R16 000 per bed if the state runs out of bed space. The province remains the epicentre of the virus, and accounts for about two-thirds of the total number of cases.

France to turn surplus wine into hand sanitiser

French winemakers will transform wine that went unsold during the country’s two-month coronavirus lockdown into hand sanitiser and ethanol to make room for the next harvest, a farming agency said on Thursday.

Wine sales and exports, particularly to the US, plunged at the height of the coronavirus crisis, leaving winemakers with millions of litres of unsold wine.

“From tomorrow, 33 licensed distillers will be able to collect the wine and distil it,” said Didier Josso, head of the wine branch in the farming agency FranceAgriMer, at a video press conference.

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