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DA threatens legal action against Ramaphosa over SA's vaccine rollout plan

The party said the few details on the vaccine strategy released by the minister of health are nothing but wishful thinking.

FILE: President Cyril Ramaphosa announces a return to level 3 restrictions during an address on 28 December 2020. Picture: @GovernmentZA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - The Democratic Alliance (DA) has on Monday threatened President Cyril Ramaphosa with court action should he fail to release government’s full vaccine rollout strategy in the next week.

The party said that the few details on the vaccine strategy released by the minister of Health were nothing but wishful thinking.

DA leader John Steenhuisen said that South Africa was lagging behind most countries, even on the continent when, it came to vaccine procurement and distribution.

Steenhuisen said that government made three major failures in its COVID-19 response.

He said the first was the lockdown and the second blunder was with testing and tracing.

“It is the third failure that might still prove to be the deadliest and that is government’s inexplicable dereliction of its duty to acquire and this will exact a very heavy price.”

Steenhuisen has also questioned the numbers provided by the Health Department, saying that the full details of vaccine shipments must be released.

He said that this failure was a violation of the rights of citizens.

“Today, the president will be receiving a letter from our lawyers stating out the extent to which government strategy does not meet the constitutional requirements for a comprehensive vaccine rollout programme and that it violates several Constitutional provisions.”

The party said there was not a single COVID19 vaccine in the country and this could be detrimental for the country’s recovery.

Steenhuisen said South Africa made a mistake by putting all its eggs in the WHO’s Covax basket, where it could barely get enough vaccines for 10% of people.

“Countries with real leadership are vaccinating their citizens as we speak tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands every day, and not waiting for the leftovers from the world vaccine table.”

Steenhuisen said that Ramaphosa had seven days to respond to the party’s letter, failing which he would face court action.

WATCH: SA's vaccine strategy: All you need to know

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