Flash Briefing: Mkhize blames J&J for slow vaccine roll-out; DA’s Madikizela ‘lied’ on CV; airline price war; crypto

  • South Africa’s health minister has blamed Johnson & Johnson for delays to the roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccine. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize says the government has been notified by Johnson & Johnson that the company won’t sign off on the supply of 20 million doses until it receives a letter from the South African government supporting its investment in a domestic company, reports Bloomberg. “We have been taken aback by this as there are clauses in the agreement that express this support,” he said. “I mention this to demonstrate to members some of the difficult and sometimes unreasonable terms and preconditions that we have had to navigate through,” said Mkhize.
  • Democratic Alliance Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela has been accused of lying about his qualifications. MyBroadband.co.za reports that DA Federal Council chairperson, Helen Zille, said that the party regarded this in a serious light. Zille said that due processes would be followed in establishing the facts and taking follow-up action. The DA leader and MEC for Transport told Eyewitness News it was indeed true that he did not finish his BCom degree, but also said that is not a requirement for a political office in South Africa.
  • South African airlines are in a price war to attract customers – and one is tempting passengers with an offer to take a small dog on a flight with them, says MyBroadband.co.za. Kulula.com and British Airways resumed services on 1 December 2020 under new CEO Glenn Orsmond. “Your dog will now be able to travel in a pet-friendly carry bag placed under the seat in front of you,” Lift said, adding that larger dogs and other pets are not currently allowed on its flights, but added that people should “watch this space”.
  • Nearly three dozen of China’s largest technology companies have made public pledges to comply with the country’s antimonopoly laws, as they scramble to fall in line following Beijing’s moves to rein in the business empire of Jack Ma, the country’s best-known entrepreneur.
  • The direct listing of the biggest US crypto exchange has pushed tokens even more into the mainstream of investing, exposing legions of potential buyers to the digital asset class that have grown into a $2 trillion industry in little more than a decade.

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