SA mines minister, Gwede Mantashe, tests positive for COVID-19 disease

Gwede Mantashe, mines and energy minister, South Africa

SOUTH African mines minister, Gwede Mantashe, and his wife Nolwandle Mantashe have tested positive for COVID-19, said EyeWitness News (EWN).

The couple are in isolation and the minister, who received his results earlier on Tuesday, will continue to work from home, the publication said citing a government statement.

Mantashe remained committed to a course of ensuring security of energy and petroleum products supply to society during this difficult period and beyond, the statement said, adding that this was the minister’s third round of tests since the outbreak of this virus.

According to the Minerals Council South Africa, the country has a reported 287,796 positive cases of COVID-19 of which some 4,172 are fatalities.

In the mining sector specifically, 4708 positive cases have been reported and 37 deaths with the most fatalities occurring in the platinum sector (21) followed by gold (11) and coal where some three people have died from the disease.

South African president, Cyril Ramaphosa, on Sunday imposed new lockdown measures banning the sale of alcohol and imposing a nighttime curfew in an attempt to reduce the number of non-COVID-19 hospital bed occupancies.