AfriForum/Solidarity to fight govt monopoly on Covid-19 vaccines

Allowing private sector to purchase and distribute would allow for better efficiency, say organisations

AfriForum and Solidarity

8 January 2021

AfriForum and Solidarity to fight government monopoly on purchasing and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines

AfriForum and Solidarity have instructed their legal team to prepare a case challenging the government’s proposed monopoly on the buying and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. The two organisations want to ensure that those who seek to get the vaccine are not obstructed from doing so by government mismanagement or corruption.

AfriForum’s stance is that government cannot have a monopoly on deciding who receives the vaccine and who does not. Allowing the private sector to purchase and distribute COVID-19 vaccines would allow for better efficiency regarding distributing the vaccine to those who want it, to prevent abuse of power by the government, as well as to ensure that government incompetence or corruption does not derail the process.

“Throughout the lockdown period the government has proven that when it has a monopoly on COVID-19 related policies and tasks, corruption and inefficiency tend to be rampant. AfriForum therefore seeks to prevent the potential abuse of government power as it relates to the buying and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, by fighting to allow the private sector to assist in this endeavour,” says Ernst van Zyl, Campaign Officer for Strategy and Content at AfriForum.

According to Connie Mulder, head of the Solidarity Research Institute, South Africa cannot allow the nationalisation of vaccines. The state has a history of failures and South-Africa cannot afford another failure during this crisis.

Statement issued by AfriForum, 8 January 2021