Lawyers for Human Rights say it would be unconstitutional for the government to only administer the COVID-19 vaccine to residents and leave out undocumented migrants.

This comes after Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said that people would have to show their identity documents to prove that they are South African citizens before they can receive the jab.

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Head of the Refugee and Migrants Programme at Lawyers for Human Rights Sharon Ekambarami says in a globalised world, communicable diseases require governments to use a regional approach to address them.

“I think that there is definitely a legal challenge that can be taken against this. I think that it’s in the context of a crisis of the asylum system in our country that many people are waiting, there are over 200 000 people who don’t have their papers to confirm their status as refugees in our country. That alone is reason enough to challenge this,” says Ekambarami.

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