We remain cautiously optimistic that the already procured and negotiated vaccines will be rolled-out effectively and efficiently, without corruption or compromise. The veil of secrecy and lack of transparency as regards the phased roll-out programme for the vaccination of South Africans is concerning, and must be addressed with urgency.
Furthermore, we call on the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) and the Department of Health to strongly consider the inclusion of teachers as frontline workers and to be eligible to receive the vaccine, as schools are to reopen and their lives are on the line.
We will closely monitor the implementation of the vaccine roll-out process, to ensure fairness, and to ensure that those scheduled to receive their inoculations, receive them.
The IFP further notes the easing of restrictions of Adjusted Level 3 Lockdown, and the decision by the President and the NCCC to keep the country under Alert Level 3.
The lifting of restrictions on the sale, consumption and distribution of alcohol – with limited times of sale and off-site consumption regulations – will provide a huge relief to the industry, and help save jobs.
However, we caution South Africans that this is not the time for complacency, nor should we let our guard down by acting in a manner that compromises the health and safety of our fellow South Africans.
Indeed, it is regrettable that the President has overlooked thanking our own healthcare workers in favour of praising Cuban doctors – while our healthcare workers have had to endure the brutal brunt of serving on the frontlines in our hospitals and clinics.
We reiterate our call to South Africans to remain home whenever possible, to practice social distancing, to avoid crowded spaces and places, to always wear masks, and to fully adhere to all the adjusted lockdown regulations.
Mkhuleko Hlengwa, MP
IFP National Spokesperson
071 111 0539