Listeriosis claims three more lives

File: Thousands of shop shelves around the country remain empty after the mass recall of processed meats. A baby, less than a month old, is one of the latest victims of the listeriosis outbreak.

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa's listeriosis outbreak has claimed three more victims and the country's health departments are still scrambling to contain it from spreading.

The death toll in the world's deadliest listeriosis outbreak now stands at 183.

A baby, less than a month old, is one of the latest victims.

READ: Early Childhood Centre illnesses key to tracing source of listeriosis outbreak

Processed meats, made by Enterprise and RCL Foods, have been identified as the origins of the outbreak, although Tiger Brands is refusing to take responsibility for the crisis.   

Western Cape health officials are now trying to educate the public about the listeria bacteria.

The food producers linked to the outbreak have been warned to brief their lawyers.

EFF leader, Julius Malema said: "The company’s involved, Rainbow Chicken and Enterprise, must take full responsibility for the outbreak and have the audacity to be prepared to compensate those infected. We have therefore instructed our lawyers to take class action against company’s involved in the spread of listeriosis."

At the same time, Health Minister, Aaron Motsoaledi, has slammed private laboratories for not releasing data on the disease sooner.

READ: Government will support listeria litigation: Motsoaledi

Speaking in Parliament, Motsoaledi said: "The problem was encountered speaker with private labs because they're not part of NHLS. Hence the NICD has no direct access to their data. Their info started trickling in only in September 2017 especially data from 2013 which they didn't keep at hand because they're not obliged to do so."

Thousands of shop shelves around the country remain empty after the mass recall of processed meats.

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