South Africa’s death toll from coronavirus has passed the 5,000 marks, according to official figures released on Sunday by the continent’s hardest-hit country.

South Africa registered 85 new deaths from the virus in the previous 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 5,033.

A total of 13,449 new infections were also officially diagnosed, taking the number to 364,328, figures released by the health ministry showed.

Minister of Health Zweli Mkhiz urged citizens to respect recommended hygiene measures.

“As a government, we have mobilised every resource…. But the government cannot manage this unilaterally,” he said in a statement.
South Africa Virus Death Toll Tops 5,000: Official

“We are extremely concerned that fatigue seems to have set in and South Africans are letting down their guard at a time when the spread of infection is surging.

“We see poor or no social distancing in communities. Masks are abandoned or not work properly,” he said.

“This will directly influence the rise in numbers in the next two weeks. Our ability to break the cycle of infections depends on our willingness to remain focused and disciplined and take non-pharmaceutical interventions seriously,” the minister said.

The peak of the pandemic in South Africa is expected over the next few weeks.

Authorities imposed a strict lockdown in late March, but the measures have been progressively eased to avoid economic collapse.