South African minister dies of COVID-19

South African minister and presidential advisor Jackson Mthembu died of the novel coronavirus, the presidency announced on Thursday, according to Anadolu Agency.

“It is with deep sorrow and shock that we announce that Minister in The Presidency, Jackson Mthembu passed away earlier today from COVID-19 related complications,” a presidency statement said.

President Cyril Ramaphosa described Mthembu as “an exemplary leader, an activist and life-long champion of freedom and democracy,” and said his passing “leaves our nation at a loss.”

South Africa has the highest number of infections and deaths in Africa, and is also the 15th most affected country globally, according to the US’s Johns Hopkins University.

The country has so far confirmed 38,854 COVID-19-related deaths and nearly 1.36 million infections.


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