Coronavirus: Western Cape govt to deploy more tracing teams to curb infections

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde. (Photo by Gallo Images/Netwerk24/Adrian de Kock)
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde. (Photo by Gallo Images/Netwerk24/Adrian de Kock)

Tracing teams have been dramatically increased to ensure people testing positive are identified and isolated as quickly as possible, the Western Cape cabinet heard during its daily briefing on Thursday. 

This was done per World Health Organisation guidelines that countries should prioritise testing and tracing efforts.

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde worked from home in line with his call to businesses to allow their staff to do the same. He had a full day of meetings which he was able to conduct remotely.

"I appeal to businesses that have the means to allow their staff to work from home to take this step. Now is the time to take bold steps and innovate as we all are working to stop the spread," Winde said in a statement.

"Where this isn't possible, we appeal to businesses to take decisions that is in the best interests of their employees - by ensuring that they are able to keep their distance, in a hygienic environment. Consider where you can make a difference: Maybe you can send an email instead of holding a meeting, or re-arrange the workspace so as to allow for more space."

Meanwhile, Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo announced that the results of her Covid-19 test came back negative.

She indicated on Wednesday she would self-quarantine after she had contact on three occasions in recent weeks with the French consul, Laurent Amar, who had tested positive for Covid-19.

The Western Cape was also currently closely studying the regulations announced by the national government, and how they should be implemented by the province, the statement said.

The Western Cape provincial legislature made special arrangements to ensure the province's budget could be passed on Thursday as well as making recommendations for the children's commissioner.

"It's important that, even in difficult times like this, we must still get on with the work which the people of this province elected us to do," Winde said.

Transport MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela met with representatives of the taxi industry on Thursday, where positive discussions were held around their role in helping to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

- Compiled by Jan Gerber

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