Picture: 123RF/LUIS CARCELLER
Picture: 123RF/LUIS CARCELLER

So, my friend’s domestic was right all along. When asked two months ago why she hadn’t been vaccinated yet, her reply was: “If we wait long enough the government will pay us to get vaccinated.” Now food vouchers are being handed out to those who agree to get vaccinated!

This government and president are unbelievable. Here they are pussy-footing and lamenting about the number of non-vaccinated South Africans, so they resort to bribery (in which they are, of course, experts).

All this huff and puff about human rights and privacy in terms of the constitution is nonsense. In SA, when a child is born it is slapped with a series of vaccinations by law. No-one questions the invasions of the baby’s human rights or privacy, or even mentions the constitution. This is done as it is for the baby’s benefit, as well as for the good of society at large.

So what’s the difference? Oh yes! The trade unions are against it.  But I am led to understand that no miner is allowed underground unless he is vaccinated. So why is it OK for underground miners to be required to be vaccinated, but not those working above ground in factories?

Furthermore, if vaccination was mandatory it would boost SA’s struggling tourist industry. Most overseas visitors would rather visit a country where 95% of the population has been vaccinated, than one with a mere 45% rollout. I know vaccination is not a cure-all, and that one can still get the disease despite being vaccinated, but scientific evidence shows that the likelihood of serious illness and death is greatly reduced. 

There will, of course, be a few people who have a negative reaction to the vaccine, but should a minuscule proportion of the population be able to dictate what is for the good of the vast majority?

So, if President Cyril Ramaphosa wishes to leave a legacy now is the time for some leadership and action, since it seems increasingly unlikely that he will get a second term. Either the ANC will recall him (which seems to be the usual modus operandi these days) or the ANC will not get enough seats in parliament to foist its chosen saint upon the country. 

At least by making the vaccination mandatory Ramaphosa will have done something positive, otherwise his legacy will be one of failure, inaction and a sinking SA. If Austria can make vaccinations mandatory, why can’t  we?

Trevor McGlashan,Via BusinessLIVE

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