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Pharmacy association wants Discovery, Dis-Chem probed for possible collusion

The ICPA’s Kgosi Komape was at an inquiry in Centurion investigating allegations of racial profiling in the medical profession.

FILE: Discovery Group offices in Sandton. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN.

PRETORIA - The Independent Community Pharmacy Association (ICPA) wants Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi’s panel to investigate whether Discovery and Dis-Chem are colluding and bullying smaller operators.

The association’s Kgosi Komape was at an inquiry investigating allegations of racial profiling in the medical profession in Centurion on Tuesday.

He gave examples of pharmacies such as Durbell Pharmacies that were at risk of being pushed out by Dis-Chem and Discovery.

Komape said Durbell Cape was trading well until Dis-Chem expressed interest to operate in the same mall. He said at first, the landlord suddenly wanted to terminate Durbell’s lease and then Discovery joined the fray.

“Could they be coming here because Discovery is privy to how well Durbell is doing and gave that intelligence to Dis-Chem? Durbell then received an audit from Discovery,” he said.

The ICPA wanted this investigated.

“We are asking the inquiry to look beyond racial bullying to find out if Discovery would force other players out in favour of their favourites like Dis-Chem,” Komape said.

Advocate Ngcukaitobi warned the ICPA that he would not entertain allegations with no evidence, but asked for more information.