Govt will fight NHI opposition in court: Paahla

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Health Minister Dr Joe Paahla says government is ready to present its case in the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill in court.

This as the Democratic Alliance (DA) has vowed to challenge the Bill at the Constitutional Court.

Paahla was addressing the media at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

A number of organisations including the DA and trade union Solidarity have threatened to take the legislation to court on various grounds including a lack of proper consultation and a conviction that it is unaffordable and unsustainable.

“If you look at some of the constituencies of some of these organisations, you will find that they benefitted not only in terms of the lack of radical transformation in the sector since democracy but they benefitted even from the previous dispensation and they have had the comfort of benefitting even more in the course of democracy, building even more assets. So, anything that threatens that comfort is going to be a challenge to some of those organisations.”

Paahla says government is fully aware that many people are unhappy with the Bill.

“This is a real radical departure and therefore when you want to move from a comfort zone. There will be a lot of people who will be unhappy just from the comfort zone, people are used to you know a certain way of things but also there are also vested interests.”

President Cyril Ramaphosa signed the Bill into law earlier today at the Union Buildings in Pretoria: