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Cyril Ramaphosa praises bravery of teachers amid COVID-19 pandemic

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South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa has commended the dedication of the country’s teachers to their work, despite the risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ramaphosa made the commendation during virtual celebrations of the 30th anniversary of the South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU) on Tuesday, 6 October 2020.

“Your dedication to the success of our children and the future of our country has been proven time and again, but more so during the COVID-19 pandemic. For the sake of our children and their academic progress, you braved the dangers and risks posed by COVID-19 and returned to the classroom when asked to do so,” the president said.

With the country still battling the pandemic, Ramaphosa assured the teachers that his government is “committed to the safety of all our educators and learners, as well as of all the support staff in our school environment.”

He pledged that the government would continue to ensure that the teachers have adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) “and all the other support that they need to teach successfully and safely.”

“At the same time, I urge you to continue to be vigilant. We must keep ourselves and others safe by continuing to observe the regulations around social distancing and good hygiene protocols at all times,” Ramaphosa added.

South African schools re-opened in stages in September as the pandemic rages on, killing over 17 000 people from 682 215 confirmed cases since March, according to the Ministry of Health’s latest figures.

The Gauteng province has remained the epicentre of the pandemic, with 221 061 cases since the outbreak in March. It is followed by the KwaZulu-Natal province, with 119 694 cases, while the Western Cape and Eastern Cape provinces have 111 517 and 89 964 cases respectively, as at Wednesday, 7 October 2020.

-APA

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