Minister Ebrahim Patel Tests Positive for COVID-19

"The Minister remains committed to preparing South Africa for the post-COVID world, strengthening efforts around reconstruction and recovery," the Presidency said.

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Ebrahim Patel
Ebrahim Patel

The Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ebrahim Patel, has tested positive for COVID-19, the Presidency announced in a statement released on Saturday night.

The Minister received his results today, 25 July 2020.

This was the Minister’s second test to be conducted since the outbreak of this virus.

Minister Patel is in good spirits and is in self-quarantine, and will continue to work from home. Those that have been in contact with the Minister are also in self-isolation and have been encouraged to get tested.

On Friday, Patel participated in the virtual parliamentary budget vote debate on the revised budget for the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition.

“The Minister remains committed to preparing South Africa for the post-COVID world, strengthening efforts around reconstruction and recovery,” the Presidency said.

“As part his budget debate speech yesterday, the Minister announced that every directorate of the DTIC and every agency within its mandate will prioritise saving firms and jobs during this period.”

The statement added: “As we wish the Minister a speedy recovery, we extend the same well wishes to the thousands of South Africans and their families who are also battling coronavirus.

“To defeat this virus, we must all continue playing our part in observing all health protocols of washing our hands regularly, properly wearing a mask when in public and practicing physical distancing.”

Patel is not the first South African politician to test positive for the virus.

Others include Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi, and Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe. Both have been hospitalised. Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula also tested positive and has since recovered.

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