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South Africa reports highest single-day Covid-19 deaths

By Betty Njeru and Agencies | July 23rd 2020

South Africa has reported the highest single-day Covid-19 deaths at 572.

The number now brings the country’s death toll to 5,940.

On Thursday, the country reported 3,150 new cases of the coronavirus from a sample size of 48,553.

“As of today, a cumulative total of 394 948 confirmed COVID-19 cases in South Africa have been recorded. The total number of tests conducted to date is 2,585,474 with 48,553 new tests conducted since the last report,” its Health Ministry reported.

The number of recoveries currently stands at 229, 175.

However, of concern is the high number of fatalities that have been on the rise this week.

Reuters reported that there is concern that the death toll in South Africa may be significantly higher than is being reported.

Researchers from South Africa's Medical Research Council say the figures for natural deaths are far higher than usual - suggesting that thousands of coronavirus deaths may be going unreported.

According to the news agency, scientists revealed that the Cyril Ramaphosa led-country has witnessed some 17,000 extra deaths from natural causes between early May and mid-July.

Experts have warned that South Africa could be staring at a crisis amid an appeal for grave diggers as cases shoot up.

President Cyril Ramaphosa implemented a tough lockdown at the end of March, shutting shops, requiring people to stay at home and sending the army on to the streets to enforce it back when South Africa had only 400 recorded cases.

But a surge in poverty and unemployment in a country that already had too much of both spurred the government to lift restrictions well before the peak of infections.

Currently, there are over 380,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Africa, with more than 181,000 recoveries and 9,500 deaths.

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