EFF 2021 Elections Natasha Mazzone

Photo: EFF

EFF rally: Thousands join Malema in ‘super spreader’ march to SAHPRA

Julius Malema is leading thousands of EFF supporters – many of whom are flouting lockdown regulations – to SAHPRA offices in Pretoria.

EFF 2021 Elections Natasha Mazzone

Photo: EFF

Mass crowds have gathered alongside the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) in Pretoria on Friday, with the Red Berets having rallied supporters to protest outside the offices of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) to demand that more vaccines are approved for distribution. 

Earlier this week, EFF leader Julius Malema said that lockdown restrictions should be rejected with “contempt” and called on the public to take to the streets and address what he feels is the real cause of the third wave of COVID-19 infections – the extremely “slow and disorganised” rollout of vaccines. 

Thousands join EFF march to SAHPRA  

The march flagrantly flouts lockdown regulations pertaining to gatherings, and many among the crowd were seen without masks. Social distancing was completely ignored as a mass of EFF supporters marched on the SAHPRA offices. All this as COVID-19 infections in Gauteng continue to mount exponentially.

Malema addressed his supporters as the crowd moved towards the SAHPRA offices, and said that their demands are simple: “We want more vaccines available,” he said, “because the president and his government have eaten our money, our people are dying in their numbers”. 

“They are telling us that this event is a super spreader, but its not true – because we are meeting here, outdoor, for a few minutes. From there we are going home,” said Malema. 

“Schools are on as we speak. Our schools have more kids than this march.  Yet this march is called a super spreader.”

SAHPRA ‘will not bow to orders’  

SAHPRA said earlier on Friday that they will not submit to the demands of the EFF. 

“The normal process for the evaluation of a vaccine necessitates that all the required information regarding product safety, efficacy, and quality be provided at the time of submission. SAHPRA has fast-tracked all COVID product reviews and like other countries, has approved products on an emergency use basis with product-specific requirements.

“Whilst reviews can commence earlier with a rolling submission, it is important to note that some very important efficacy, quality, and safety information is sometimes outstanding and would require review for consideration of such products for public use. If no application has been submitted, no regulatory review can be undertaken.”