CAPE TOWN, Oct. 19 (CGTN) - South Africa's Health Minister Zweli Mkhize and his wife have both tested positive for COVID-19, his office said late on Sunday.

"I am now in quarantine at home, and both my wife and I remain optimistic that we will fully recover from this virus," Mkhize was quoted as saying in the statement.

Mkhize was tested on Saturday after showing mild symptoms.

A trained doctor, Mkhize has been at the forefront of South Africa's fight to contain the pandemic, and on Sunday he urged citizens to continue adhering to health protocols such as wearing masks, sanitizing correctly and maintaining social distancing.

"Whatever we do and wherever we go, we have to keep in mind that there remains a risk of a second wave," he said.

On Friday, the number of coronavirus cases in Africa's worst affected country surpassed 700,000 since the first case was diagnosed in March and amid fears a second wave of infection would exacerbate an economic recession.

According to the latest government data on Monday, South Africa has detected a total of 703,793 confirmed cases and 18,471 deaths.