Lobby group AfriForum says it has instructed its legal team to serve the Department of Health with an application under the Promotion of Access to Information Act, regarding government’s procurement of COVID-19 vaccines.

Earlier, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said government had to sign agreements that had a confidentiality clause with vaccine manufacturers as part of the negotiation process to buy vaccines.

Health Minister Mkhize outlines COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan:

So far, South Africa has signed agreements for 31 million doses of vaccines from Johnson & Johnson and 20 million from Pfizer.

AfriForum’s manager of Campaigns, Jacques Broodryk, says they question the constitutionality of such agreements.

“This is not the time for political or corporate games, people’s lives are at risk. The fact that a number of COVID-19 vaccines have been banned from use in various countries makes it very suspicious that the government and certain vaccine developers would not want the public to know what they discussed,” explains Broodryk.

Professor Helen Rees on COVID-19 vaccine developments: