Defence minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula pleaded ignorance in parliament about drug control regulations at the time of the SA National Defence Force’s (SANDF’s) importation of an unregistered Covid-19 drug from Cuba without the necessary approvals in place.

The SANDF has been under fire for violating all acquisition rules and health regulatory protocols after procuring Heberon Interferon-Alpha-2B, an unregistered medical drug from Cuba, which is said to significantly boost the immune system. It was invoiced at about R260m for the drug and about R35m of taxpayers’ money has already been paid...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now