Head of State Cyril Ramaposa previously urged those citizens who have not yet been vaccinated against coronavirus to get vaccinated

“I listened to the address of the President of the country on Sunday evening and agree that it is possible and necessary to protect against the omicron strain with the help of a vaccine,” one of those who were waiting for their turn to get vaccinated at the Mandla Masondo center, organized in the pharmacy, told. it is better to meet fully armed and have a vaccine against COVID-19. “

Last Friday, there was not a single person in this center in the middle of the day, but two days later, the queue of those wishing to be vaccinated reached two dozen. The picture is similar at other vaccination centers in Pretoria.

“Vaccinations are important, especially since they are free,” said housewife Nomagugu Onai in turn. “We decided that everyone in our family should be vaccinated.” Nomagugu was brought to the vaccination center by her husband, who was waiting in the car. He himself has long been vaccinated against coronavirus, as he works in a food industry.

South African President Cyril Ramaposa made an address to the nation on November 28, in which he stated that the government would not introduce any new restrictive quarantine measures in connection with the spread of the omicron strain in southern Africa. “Compared to the first two waves of the pandemic, we now have vaccines for COVID-19, so there is no need for additional tough measures,” he stressed. “Vaccines protect.” The head of state called on those citizens who have not yet been vaccinated against coronavirus to get vaccinated. The current example of vaccination centers in Pretoria shows that South Africans have heard the president and are acting on his advice.

To date, 25.2 million doses of coronavirus vaccines have been used in South Africa. The full course of immunization was completed by 14.3 million people, or 24.1% of the country’s population. The vaccination stock now reaches 15 million doses in South Africa.

So far, don’t panic

In general, life in South Africa continues in the usual rhythm for this time of year. People are working, preparing for the upcoming Christmas and New Year holidays. Business previously feared that the authorities, in connection with the emergence of the omicron strain, would impose restrictions on movement, as well as on visiting restaurants and cafes, and on the sale of alcohol. This did not happen. “We are pleased that the authorities are not subject to unnecessary fears and do not make rash hasty decisions,” a representative of the Union of Entrepreneurs of South Africa told us.

However, the situation in the country remains alarming. The omicron strain has become the main source of COVID-19 in South Africa’s most populous province of Gauteng, where Pretoria and the Johannesburg metropolis are located, according to authorities. According to experts, over the past three days, at least 1.5 thousand people in Gauteng have been infected with the omicron strain.

Little is known about the behavior of this variant of the coronavirus, except that it spreads very quickly from person to person. The first significant scientific data will not be received until the end of this week. While mortality in South African hospitals due to coronavirus is low, no more than 10 people die per day.

The authorities are closely monitoring the situation and reassuring the population. “There is no reason to panic,” South African Health Minister Joe Paahla said Monday. “We still know almost nothing about the omicron strain.” True, the head of the Ministry of Health did not say whether he was ready to change his current opinion when he finds out the details of the behavior of the new version of the coronavirus.