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"We can and must expect infections to rise as more people return to work," he said.
The country has moved to level four restrictions, with "extreme precautions" remaining in place to limit community transmission but some businesses have been allowed to resume, including openpit mining to a 100% workforce capacity.
The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases among mineworkers has grown from 10 last week to 16, with zero deaths, according to data compiled by the Minerals Council South Africa yesterday.
This compared with more than 10,000 cases across South Africa, and close to 4.2 million globally.
In a decision described as a win for mineworkers, the Labour Court ordered the country's Chief Inspector of Mines this month to gazette guidelines and require miners to prepare and implement a code of practice to mitigate the effects of COVID-19, after the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union sought binding regulations to protect workers' safety.
The minerals council said last week it looked forward to engaging with the chief inspector and members of organised labour on these issues.