Govt plans to repatriate South Africans in Wuhan: report

File: More than 60 churchgoers who attended the church gathering have since tested positive for the virus.​​​​​​​

File: Professor Francois Venter called the reopening of churches a reckless decision.

Dado Ruvic / Reuters

JOHANNESBURG - The Mail & Guardian is reporting that government plans to repatriate South Africans stuck in Wuhan, China.

The paper's journalist, Thanduxolo Jika, says a quarantine site has been identified in the Free State.

Jika spoke to eNCA about the story on the repatriation of South Africans in Wuhan.

READ: Hospital director at China virus epicentre dies

"A facility has been identified even though the confidential reports don’t say which place they’ll be quarantined at. South African National Defence Force officials had gone to Thaba Nchu to inspect the place for purposes of quarantine.“

Jika says up to 132 people have requested to be evacuated from Wuhan.

Meanwhile, eNCA has reliably learned that the Presidency will hold a briefing on the Coronavirus on Thursday.

Jika says the government is treating this matter with the utmost caution.

eNCA speaks to Chairperson for the South African Medical Asociation, Angelique Coetzee. Courtesy #DStv403

Last week the South African Medical Association (SAMA) warned that South Africa does not have enough capacity to place people under quarantine.

Angelique Coetzee, Chairperson of the South African Medical Association told eNCA SA is as ready as it can be to deal with a coronavirus situation but the country cannot handle mass quarantine efforts.

READ: WHO urges calm as China virus death toll nears 1,900

"The important quarantine is self-quarantine. It costs less to quarantine people in their specific surrounding rather than a large number on a ship or coming with a flight."

Coetzee says coronavirus is attacking people with low immune systems, including individuals with lung problems such as asthma, tuberculosis and chronic bronchitis.

Source
eNCA