President Cyril Ramaphosa has returned to his duties ending a week of self-isolation after recovering from Covid-19.
Ramaphosa was treated for mild symptoms after he had tested positive for Covid-19 on 12 December.
The president, who has received the 1st jab of the Pfizer vaccine, was tested after feeling unwell following the state memorial service in honour of former Deputy President FW de Klerk in Cape Town earlier in the day.
He has since recovered from the virus and will return to work.
“The President thanks all South Africans and leaders and friends internationally who conveyed their good wishes during this period.
“In turn, the President wishes all persons infected with Covid-19 a safe and speedy recovery,” Minister in the Presidency Modli Gungubele said in a statement on Monday.
Deputy President David Mabuza took over “all responsibilities” for a week while Ramaphosa was out of action.
Now the president is set to chair the final Cabinet meeting of the year on Wednesday.
Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe has also tested positive for Covid-19.
Mantashe tested positive on Saturday after experiencing mild symptoms.
“Minister Mantashe is in good spirits and he is currently in self-isolation,” said Gungubele.
Ramaphosa’s return comes after Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla confirmed last week that the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) recommended that the country remain under alert level 1 lockdown for the festive season.
According to scientific studies, the virus is spreading quicker than in previous waves, however, the rates of hospitalisation and deaths remain relatively low, hence the decision to keep South Africa on level 1.
This is despite the fourth wave of Covid-19 infections, which are believed to be driven by the new Omicron variant, currently spreading across various provinces.
Phaahla further indicated that the Department of Health will continue to closely monitor the situation throughout the festive period.
As of 19 December, South Africa has recorded a total of 3,308,074 cases of Covid-19, with 15,465 new cases identified in the past 24 hours.
This represents a positivity rate of 30.7%.
A further three Covid-19 related deaths were reported, bringing total fatalities to 90,348 to date, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) confirmed on Sunday.
Additional reporting by Xanet Scheepers