The first Covid-19 case at a prison in Gauteng has been confirmed after an official at Johannesburg Correctional Centre, also known as Sun City, tested positive for the virus.
In a statement on Tuesday, the Department of Correctional Services announced three new cases have been recorded as the number of confirmed cases of the virus across various correctional facilities have increased to 114
Department spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo said the prison recorded its first case, while two new cases have been confirmed at the Warm Bokkeveld Prison in the Western Cape.
Nxumalo added there was some good news as the department had also recorded its first recoveries – one at the East London Correctional Centre in the Eastern Cape and another at the Kutama Sinthumule Correctional Centre in Limpopo.
“The recoveries follow intensified efforts by the department in implementing its Covid-19 disaster management strategy whereby more officials and inmates are screened and tested,” he said.
On Monday, News24 reported the Worcester Correctional Centre in the Western Cape became the second prison in South Africa where an inmate had tested positive for Covid-19.
The department confirmed 16 officials and one prisoner have now tested positive at the facility.
The first prison, which saw inmates contracting the virus, was the East London Correctional Centre in the Eastern Cape.
On Tuesday, Nxumalo, said the confirmed cases in the Eastern Cape remained the same – 31 officials and 56 inmates.
All 56 inmates and 30 officials are from the East London prison, while one official at the St Albans Correctional Centre in Port Elizabeth also tested positive.
News24 previously reported the outbreak of the virus at the East London prison emanated from an official working in the female section of the prison.
The second positive case was confirmed on 8 April after an official, who sought out the services of a private laboratory, received her results.
“Prevention measures for officials are being flagged as the numbers continue to increase, hence a comprehensive care response to all positive cases remains pivotal,” Nxumalo said.