ResearchPad - original-article-article-original Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[South Africa: Challenges and successes of the COVID-19 lockdown]]> At the beginning of March 2020, South Africa (59 million inhabitants) was hit by the pandemic of COVID-19 and soon became the most affected country in Africa by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. From one single case on March 5th, the number of cases increased rapidly, forcing the South-African Government to swiftly react and place the country under strict lockdown for six weeks. The strategy of the South African Government bore fruits with a contained spread of the virus. If the number of positive cases at the end of the lockdown reached 5647, the number of fatal casualties was limited to 103 deaths. The lockdown was overall well respected, even if serious problems of food supply soon occurred in informal settlements, leading to riots and confrontation with security forces. Indeed, populations were obedient, but not being able to practice sport or outdoors activities appeared heavy. The constant fear of the poorest not to have enough money to pay rent and buy food (even if the Government organised food parcels’ distributions), and to find less and less work was echoed by the fear of losing jobs among those more privileged. Despite the risk of an economic crisis, the South African Government has continued on the reasonable path of containing the pandemic with ending the lockdown at a slow pace, in five phases.