Rhodes University, in collaboration with Government Communications (GCIS), Makana Local Municipality and various other Makhanda stakeholders embarked on a COVID-19 Awareness campaign on Friday as infection rates continue to sour in the province.

Rhodes Music Radio’s Raymond Mojapelo reports that the initiative was aimed at conscientising the residents of Makhanda and the Rhodes University community about the looming COVID-19 second wave.

President Cyril Ramaphosa raised concerns over this during his recent update to the nation, in which he highlighted the spike in numbers, especially in Eastern Cape, Nelson Mandela Metro and the Sarah Baartman District.

Campaign participants mounted COVID-19 posters around Rhodes University, a motorcade of stakeholders travelled through Makhanda for loud hailing and visiting various liquor establishments to check for compliance.

This all in efforts to contain the situation in the Eastern Cape, which is showing signs of a COVID-19 resurgence. 
Last week, the number of new cases in the province was 50% higher than the week before. And the total number of new cases in the last 14 days was around 145% higher than the previous 14 days. 

The office of the premier on Thursday held a media briefing and announced that the premier Lubabalo Oscar Mabuyane contracted the virus and is self-isolating.

The Makana Joint Operations Committee vowed to monitor the situation and to work closely with the local stakeholder to ensure that the eminent resurgence doesn’t get worse in a hugely under-resourced town. 

Makana has only one hospital and heavily pressurised health care facilities. Despite Friday’s campaign, public service announcements were also aired on Rhodes Music Radio to try to send the awareness message to students who have already started visiting clubs and other events. – Report by Rhodes Music Radio’s Raymond Mojapelo