South Africa has reported its biggest single-day jump in coronavirus cases, as hospitals across the country brace for an onslaught of patients and officials warn of another strict lockdown. 

More than 8,700 infections were confirmed on Thursday, taking the country’s total count to 168,061, according to health ministry data, while deaths rose by 95 to 2,844. 

The surge comes as the government has allowed businesses to reopen in recent weeks to stave off economic disaster after a strict two-month stay-at-home order worsened already high unemployment and drastically increased hunger.

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