South Africa coronavirus cases rise to 2,173

South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa

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BY REUTERS ,13TH APRIL,2020-South Africa on Sunday reported a further 145 cases of the coronavirus, taking the total number in the country to 2,173, a statement from the Health ministry said.

The statement did not provide any update on the number of deaths, which rose to 25 on Saturday.

President Cyril Ramaphosa extended a lockdown aimed at stemming the spread of the coronavirus by two weeks to the end of April.

The country has the most confirmed coronavirus cases in Africa, but that number is expected to rise as the government embarks on a mass testing drive.

South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa

The lockdown, which started on March 27 and was due to last for 21 days, is one of the toughest measures imposed by an African government, and Ramaphosa vowed a package of support for businesses affected by the economic shutdown.

“After careful consideration of the available evidence, the National Coronavirus Command Council has decided to extend the nationwide lockdown by a further two weeks, beyond the initial 21 days,” Ramaphosa said.

“This means that most of the existing lockdown measures will remain in force until the end of April.”

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