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We’re in an era of hope: Mkhize reflects on a year since SA’s first COVID case

Mkhize on Friday said exactly a year ago, he had the unenvious position of having to break the news to the president.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize (middle), KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala (left) and MEC of Health in KZN Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu arrive at Grey’s Hospital on Friday, 5 March 2021. Picture: @DrZweliMkhize/Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has been reflecting back on the last year of the country's COVID-19 war.

Speaking in KwaZulu-Natal earlier on Friday morning, Mkhize warned that the battle was not over yet - although there was more hope a year on with the vaccine rollout on track. He was touring Greys Hospital in KwaZulu-Natal.

Mkhize said exactly a year ago, he had the unenvious position of having to break the news to the president.

“I had to call the president and told him this is a call I wished to never have had to make and that was to confirm that we had the first COVID-19 positive patient identified in South Africa.”

The minister's offered his condolences to those who've lost loved ones to the virus.

The country's coronavirus death toll currently stands at over 50,000

He said the country was on track with its vaccine plan: “There is a lot more hope now than the fear that engulfed us on 5 March 2020. This now is an era where we see hope, we see optimism, but we know it’s not over yet because we still have to use our masks, we still have to sanitise and keep distances.”

WATCH: Reflecting on a year of COVID-19: SA is better geared for the future

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