AfriForum demands answers regarding COVID-19 vaccinations
12 April 2021
The civil rights organisation AfriForum gave its legal team instruction to serve an application under the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) on the Department of Health. This follows after the Minister of Health, Zweli Mkhize, admitted on social media last week that government had to sign confidentiality agreements with vaccine manufacturers as part of the negotiation process to acquire vaccines.
AfriForum queries the constitutionality of such an agreement and also wants to know who signed the agreement.
Government recently announced that it will establish a fund to support people who experience serious side effects due to the vaccines. AfriForum is of the opinion that the use of several COVID-19 vaccines has been banned in a number of countries due to the side effects caused by it and if there is indeed reason for concern regarding the use of the vaccines, people have the right to know.
“The vaccines are acquired with taxpayer’s money and it is expected of South Africans to have themselves vaccinated with these vaccines. It is thus very suspicious that South Africans may not know what is stated in these confidentiality agreements. Besides, government established a fund for people who experience side effects due to the vaccines. One cannot help but think that where there is smoke, there is a fire,” says Jacques Broodryk, AfriForum’s Manager of Campaigns.
According to the organisation, government’s intransparency regarding the agreements arouses a great deal of suspicion.
Issued by Andrea van Wyk, Media Relations Officer, AfriForum, 12 April 2021