South Africa tops one million coronavirus cases

South Africa has become the first country on the African continent to surpass the one-million mark for coronavirus cases.

The country, which is in the middle of a second wave of infections, has recorded 1,004,413 coronavirus cases since March, the health ministry said late Sunday.

A new variant of the virus thought to be more highly transmissible is spreading in South Africa.

John Nkengasong, head of the pan-African health organization Africa CDC, said last week the variant in South Africa was being transmitted rapidly and is likely responsible for most of the second wave of the pandemic there.

Many countries have put restrictions in place for travellers from South Africa since the mutated variant was detected.

Country-wide restrictions on movement were imposed in South Africa at the end of March. They were eased a few months ago but tightened up again for the festive season.

The coronavirus has spread relatively slowly on the African continent as a whole, with the total number of cases low compared to other regions.

Source: GNA

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