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NEWSFLASH NEWS AGENCY 24 November 9 am

Good morning,

In this bulletin:

# Vaccine hesitancy could be a key driver of the Covid-19 fourth wave in South Africa
# AfriForum is concerned by towns that still don’t have clean, safe drinking water
# And, the George Municipality is putting measures in place to curtail the damage following the floods

# Continued vaccine hesitancy in South Africa, along with excessive complacency among those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19, is likely to be a key driver of the fourth wave. This is according to AfroCentric Group CEO, Ahmed Banderker. He says based on recent data, the fourth wave is likely to start early next month, with hospital admissions peaking at between 40 and 80-percent of that seen in the third wave. Banderker says vaccination remains the most important weapon in the fight against Covid-19.

# AfriForum says a lot of municipalities still disregard Section 24 of the Constitution, which ensures a healthy environment for South Africans. The organisation tested the drinking water in 231 towns and the treated sewage of 142 sewage treatment plants, as part of its annual blue and green drop project. AfriForum’s Lambert de Klerk says the drinking water of four towns Hartswater, Jan Kempdorp and Kimberley in the Northern Cape and Wolmaransstad in North West, and 122 sewage systems did not comply with the national standards:

Play sound: ENG LambertDeKlerkOnWater

# Newly elected deputy mayor of George, Raybin Figland, yesterday visited several areas affected by heavy rain which caused flooding. He says residents are thankful for interventions to curtail damage to water and stormwater infrastructure. George Municipality spokesperson Chantel Klose-Barnard says they have put in place a number of measures to ensure the damage to water and electricity supply is undone:

Play sound: ENG ChantalOnGeorge

# The US Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, has warned that an escalation of the fighting in Ethiopia is threatening any progress towards negotiating a ceasefire. Thousands of people have been killed since the fighting erupted in northern Ethiopia in November last year, triggering a deep humanitarian crisis. Feltman says the goal is to support diplomacy as the only approach to address the underlying causes of this conflict. He says continued war risks are unraveling Africa’s second-most-populous country of security and stability.

# Golf: Dean Burmester is hoping to keep his incredible end-of-year form going, as he returns to South Africa this week for the Joburg Open at Randpark Golf Club. In May, Burmester claimed his second victory on what was formerly the European Tour, and a few weeks ago he won the South African PGA Championship. Burmester says he is determined to keep pushing for another victory before the year ends, especially one on home soil:

Play sound: ENG BurmesterOnForm

# And the financial indicators: The dollar is trading at 15-rand-83-cents and the euro at 17-rand-80-cents. One British pound costs 21-rand-18-cents and Bitcoin trades at 56-thousand-376-dollar-1-cents. Gold is selling at one thousand-793-dollars-23-cents a fine ounce and Brent crude oil is quoted at 82-dollars-55-cents a barrel.

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