South Africa now has 5 350 confirmed Covid-19 cases and 103 deaths, meaning the last 24 hours has seen 354 new cases and ten deaths, the biggest jump to date..

“This is the highest number of cases in a 24-hour cycle recorded to date and represents a 73% increase relative to the day before,” Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize announced on Wednesday night.

During an in-depth briefing on Tuesday, Mkhize said scientific modelling had shown that the national lockdown had the desired effect in terms of containing the spread of the virus and that the decision announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa last week to go into a phased alert level lockdown was based on sound scientific advice.

A total of 197 127 people have been tested for the coronavirus in both the private and public sectors to date, Mkhize said on Wednesday.

The Western Cape remains the province with the highest number of confirmed cases at 2 135 and at 38 deaths has also recorded the highest number of fatalities.

The three latest deaths, two men, aged 78 and 67, and a 79-year old woman, all had underlying illnesses, according to Premier Alan Winde.