The Congress of South African Trade Unions salutes the South African government following the arrival of the of the first consignment of the COVID-19 vaccine in the country. This represents the kind of progress that the federation has been demanding from our government.
The Federation calls for transparency in the management of the vaccination programme. We call on the government to ensure that corruption and opportunism do not derail or taint the vaccination programme.
We do not want to see the same corruption chaos that unfolded during the procurement of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), where politicians gave tenders to their unqualified and inexperienced friends and children.
While there are grounds for the government to deviate from complying with the Public Finance Management Act and other tender management regulations and procurement protocols, this should be done in the name of efficiency and within the legal framework.
Saving lives should be the number one priority for the vaccination programme and not looting.
The main priority is to ensure that the vaccine is properly stored, is efficiently managed and distributed to those who need it. We call on the national parliament and other oversight state institutions to remain vigilant and perform their duties with diligence.
We reiterate our call for a single online open public procurement system that was adopted to be implemented immediately. The government also needs to set definitive timeframes on its commitment to capacitate commercial crimes courts to prioritise corruption cases.