Some South African residents are worried about how the country’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, who has been fully vaccinated against covid 19 could still text positive for the virus.
The president who was last seen in public on Sunday, at the national tribute to F.W De Klerk has postponed getting a booster shot of a COVID-19 vaccine after testing positive for the disease.
At vaccination centers in South Africa, public health experts advice that the public should use the presidents case as motivation to get vaccinated.
“The president testing positive shows that it (COVID-19) can affect anybody, from a high status to a low status. So the important thing is (for people to) always: mask up, sanitize, distance and most importantly, go and vaccinate.” Michelle Strohmenger, nurse said
South Africa’s regulatory authority last week approved the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to be used as a booster shot, opening the way for third doses to be administered to adults in order to battle the current surge driven by the omicron variant.
Some residents say the presidents case is enough confirmation that indeed coronavirus is no respecter of persons.
“If it (COVID-19) can infect people in power, it means that it’s real. The president is someone with a lot of power, he is in charge of all of us.” Sibongiseni Khanyile, vaccine recipient:
“The fact that this virus can infect the president shows that it is dangerous. Let’s make the effort to come out and get vaccinated.” William Legula, vaccine recipient:
South Africa’s 7-day rolling average of daily new cases has risen over the past two weeks from 7.6 new cases per 100,000 people on Nov. 28 to 32.7 new cases per 100,000 people on Dec. 12, according to Johns Hopkins University.
More than 70% of the new cases since mid-November are omicron, according to nationwide tests.
In general, the new omicron cases have resulted in milder disease, with fewer hospitalizations.