Dlamini-Zuma set to file response to vaccine challenge by Wednesday

Co-operative governance & traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
Co-operative governance & traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
Image: GCIS

AfriForum and Solidarity say co-operative governance & traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has until Wednesday to explain the government’s monopolistic rollout plan for Covid-19 vaccines.

The two organisations have taken legal action against Dlamini-Zuma and health minister Zweli Mkhizwe to seek clarity on whether the private sector would have access to Covid-19 vaccines.

“The government has appropriated the right to be the sole procurer of vaccines in SA,” said Connie Mulder, head of the Solidarity research institute.

“It is unlikely that the government would be able to come up with the expertise or capacity required to roll out a vaccine programme of this magnitude. By restricting procurement, the government is delaying the process,” Mulder said.

According to AfriForum, the government's proposed monopoly on the buying and distribution of Covid-19 vaccines “drastically” infringes on the basic rights of all SA citizens.

“We are not opposed to the government buying vaccines, but we are in the midst of a pandemic. The more vaccines enter the country, the better. However, we do not understand why all other stakeholders are prohibited from purchasing vaccines as well. It simply does not make sense for the government to deliberately delay the process by insisting on being the sole purchaser,” Mulder said.

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