News / Covid-19

Citizen Reporter
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2 minute read
20 Oct 2021
7:24 pm

591 new Covid-19 cases reported in SA

Citizen Reporter

The University of Cape Town will require all staff and students to be vaccinated against Covid-19 from January, its council said Wednesday.

Prominent cases have triggered a deluge of inaccurate information online. Photo: AFP/Patrick T. Fallon

591 new cases of Covid-19 have been reported in South Africa in the past 24 hours, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), a division of the National Health Laboratory Service, has announced.

This brings the total number of laboratory-confirmed cases to 2.917,846. 

The increase represents a 1.7% positivity rate, said the institute.

The majority of new cases today are from KwaZulu-Natal (22%), followed by Western Cape (21%). Free State and Gauteng Province each accounted for 12%; Eastern Cape, North West and  Northern Cape each accounted for 9% respectively; Mpumalanga accounted for 5%; and Limpopo accounted for 1% of today’s new cases.

As per the National Department of Health, a further 80 Covid-19 related deaths have been reported, bringing total fatalities to 88,754 to date.

18.251,789 tests have been conducted in both public and private sectors.

There has been an increase of 46 hospital admissions in the past 24 hours.

UCT to bar unvaccinated from campus

The University of Cape Town will require all staff and students to be vaccinated against Covid-19 from January, its council said Wednesday.

Details of the plan are expected in December, making Africa’s top-ranking university the first in the country to require proof of vaccination in order to access the campus.

South Africa launched electronic vaccination certificates this month and is debating whether to make inoculation mandatory for certain events.

Only fully jabbed football fans were allowed to attend the match between South Africa and Ghana last week, the first time spectators have attended a sporting event in the republic since the coronavirus pandemic struck early last year.

Cricket has also followed suit.

Two major companies — financial services group Sanlam and medical aid provider Discovery — have meanwhile asked all staff to be immunised by 2022.

The University of Cape Town Council said it had asked the executive to “develop the operational details” for approval in December.

The decision was partly based on a survey of staff and students in which most respondents supported a mandatory vaccine policy, it said in a statement.

The country worst-hit by coronavirus in Africa was slow to start inoculating its population and is struggling with vaccine hesitancy.

Jabs were opened up to children aged 12 and older on Wednesday in a bid to limit Covid-19 outbreaks in schools.

South Africa aims to vaccinate 40 million people by February, and is about a quarter of the way toward that goal.

Additional reporting by AFP