Flash Briefing: Ramaphosa says Africa has few Covid-19 vaccine options; DA; Santam and Ma-Afrika

By Melani Nathan 

  • South Africa’s Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize has outlined the department’s plan to vaccinate South Africans against the Covid-19 virus. The minister says he isn’t at liberty to discuss vaccine procurement deals with pharmaceutical companies because of non-disclosure agreements.
  • Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance has released a statement, announcing its intention to compel government to publish more details through a Public Access to Information Act application. “South Africans deserve to know what the details of government’s vaccine plan is – and they deserve to know immediately” says Sizwe Gwarube, the DA’s Shadow Minister of Health.
  • President Cyril Ramaphosa says Africa has few options in procuring Covid-19 vaccines. Pfizer and BioNTech have offered to supply Africa with 50 million Covid-19 vaccines for health workers between March and the end of this year, the presidency said in a response to Bloomberg. Moderna has no supplies for Africa, while AstraZeneca has no shots for the continent in 2021 and has directed the African Union to negotiate with the Serum Institute of India, which is making the vaccine on behalf of AstraZeneca. Cyril Ramaphosa is the African Union’s chairman.
  • Santam announced that it will commence the process for assessing claims for policies with contingent business interruption extensions that were impacted by the recent judgment in the Western Cape High Court in the case between Santam and Ma-Afrika Hotels and The Stellenbosch Kitchen, and the judgment of the Supreme Court of Appeal in the case between Café Chameleon and Guardrisk. However, the insurer says it will appeal the ruling in the Ma-Afrika case, with a specific focus on indemnity periods.

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