So much has been tainted

As ominous as the condom scandal already is, there is a strong possibility that the full extent of its damage might never be appreciated.

As ominous as the condom scandal already is, there is a strong possibility that the full extent of its damage might never be appreciated.

In intangible terms, the damage from the shenanigans at Latex Surgical Products, which has a three-year contract with the Department of Health through its empowerment wing, Zalatex, to produce Choice condoms, has compromised the credibility of the government's anti-Aids campaign to promote the use of condoms as a safety measure against contracting HIV.

Shockingly the scam has also tainted the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS), whose integrity and image as the watchdog for the consumer may have been compromised.

A probe has revealed that an SABS official allegedly accepted bribes to approve millions of defective condoms produced by the company.

SABS chief executive Martin Kuscus himself has pointed out that this organisation needs to operate in an environment where trust and integrity are vital.

In essence, the SABS had been entrusted with the responsibility to ensure the condoms posed no health risks.

But this responsibility had translated into a licence to maim - allegedly in exchange for bribes.

That said, we welcome the speed with which police, the government and the bureau of standards have acted to bring matters to a head.

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