THE National Coronavirus Command Council is meeting today to discuss the current state of affairs as the numbers of new cases continue to decline.

Health Minister Dr. Zweli Mkhize has confirmed that the downward trend would certainly be on the agenda but warned that the country is not out the woods yet even though numbers were declining across the country.

The meeting comes amid rumors that the council might recommend the lockdown be downgraded.

The country is currently on alert level 3. There have also been rumours circulating on social media that President Cyril Ramaphosa will lift the ban on the sale of alcohol before August 15.

Mkhize said without a doubt the corruption in the procurement of protective personal equipment was also going to be on the table.

“On the other hand our focus is going to be tabling the progress which is indicating that we are in a hopeful phase, however, we are not out of the woods so we must start discussing certain restrictions we are likely to ease and the president is going to announce to the country once these decisions have been taken.

“But from where we sit, we would like to say, whatever restrictions we might be discussing, it means balancing lives and livelihoods. It is more about ensuring that we insist that people are using masks, sanitizing, washing their hands, and distancing. All of these are important to ensure that the numbers continue to go down.

Mkhize said the government is determined to get to a point where there is zero transmission, and this was still far off. It was important that the infection did not resurge again after going down.

These, he said, will form part of the discussions during the meeting.