COVID-19 has started to wreak havoc in the top political ranks in South Africa.
The virus has affected senior politicians in the ANC and the official opposition, the Democratic Alliance.
Both the ANC and the DA have lost senior members to the pandemic. For the ANC, its first high profile COVID-19 casualty is Gordon Kegakilwe, the MEC for Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements and Sanitation. The second victim is Ricardo Mthembu, the spokesperson of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal, who passed away in hospital after a battle with COVID-19.
The DA’s Mayor of Langeberg, in the Western Cape, Henry Jansen died of COVID-19 yesterday. He had been in hospital for a week.
Several high ranking members of both parties have been infected with the virus and are in self- isolation.
In the ANC, these include North West Premier Job Mokgoro and North West MEC for Public Works and Roads, Saliva Molapisi. Paul Mashatile, the ANC’s Treasurer-General is in self-quarantine after his wife passed away from suspected a COVID-19 related cause. Mokgoro has been admitted to a hospital and Molapisi is in self-isolation at home.
The DA’s Alan Winde, the Premier of the Western Cape, has tested positive for COVID-19.
“I received a positive test result for COVID-19 this morning and I am in self-isolation at home for 14 days. On Sunday, I started to develop mild flu-like symptoms. As a type 2 diabetic and over 55 years of age, I know I am at a higher risk of developing a more serious illness,” Winde announced on Twitter.
Gauteng Premier David Makhura has wished his fellow provincial premiers well. “Wishing the Premier of the North West, Job Mokgoro and Alan Winde, respectively, a speedy recovery. Looking forward to seeing you back in action,” Makhura said.
I received a positive test result for Covid-19 this morning,& I am in self-isolation at home for 14 days.— Premier Alan Winde (@alanwinde) July 8, 2020
On Sunday, I started to develop mild flu-like symptoms. As I am Diabetic (type 2)& over 55 years of age, I know I am at a higher risk of developing a more serious illness. pic.twitter.com/oWMurB0usI