Health Minister Zweli Mkhize told MPs on Wednesday that the country has passed the Covid-19 storm as fewer cases are being reported.
Cape Town – Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has defended the lockdown in Parliament saying it was the correct decision to take to prevent more deaths in the country due to Covid-19.
He told MPs on Wednesday that the country has, however, passed the Covid-19 storm with fewer cases reported.
Mkhize said with the surge over they will continue to open the economy.
He said the opening of the economy was not about big business, but the people who are the backbone of the economy.
He also said there were more than 240 health workers who have died of Covid-19 and more than 31 000 infected were with the virus.
Asked by DA MP Lindy Wilson in delaying to open the economy, Mkhize said it was in the best interest of the country to implement the hard lockdown to prevent the deaths of more people.
“At the time if we did not do the lockdown, South Africa would be worse than it is today. The reality is that we have done the best in the situation. You must stop politicisjng the matter. Yes, we must rebuild the economy,” said Mkhize.
“When we opened the economy it was not about the big business, it was about the people who are the backbone of the economy,” said Mkhize.
Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu also told MPs that they have received eight million applications for the R350 unemployment grant and processed five million of these applications.
The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) has been processing the applications for unemployed people electronically.
“When you look at the eight million people who applied and five million who have been paid there has been a small number who have penetrated the system,” said Zulu.
She said they were dealing with those who were not supposed to get the R350 grant or double dipping.