Government have announced that those who committed serious crimes will get Covid 19 vaccine first
Government announcement that convicted and awaiting trial prisoners… Including murderers, child molesters and rapists will be among the first South Africans to receive the Covid 19 vaccine is sparking controversy with some questioning the reasoning.
The move is welcomed by lawyers for human rights and correctional services unions. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize announced on Sunday that prisoners would be among the first people in SA to be vaccinated against the deadly disease.
According to the plan it suggest that prisoners, who have comorbidities and are older than 60, will be among the first inmates to receive their vaccine, and will be inoculated ahead of citizens who do not have comorbidities and who are younger than 60.
Stressing the phase 1 strategy Mkhize stressed that those who will receive the vaccine first will be health care workers.
Announcement From the Correctional services department state that it had placed the Helderstroom maximum center in Caledon Western Cape on lockdown to curb the further spread of COVID 19 infections.
The lockdown came after an increase in a number of inmates testing positive. The department revealed that the number of inmates who had been infected had risen to 87 with 5 officials infected.
“Critical at this stage is the activation of containment and treatment measures to prevent other officials and inmates from being exposed to the virus,” the department said.
The department spokesperson Singabako Nxumalo said that the health care program that must be afforded to all inmates, vaccinations would be provided.
He said that
“This is paid for by the state. Remand detainees also benefit from this programme. It’s part of the primary health care that government must render to the citizens of this country.”
He continued to stress the point that roll out would prioritise inmates who are older than 60 and those with comorbidities.
In a statement he said
“The roll out will move to eventually cover the entire population following protocols set by government. Correctional officers are Frontline officials and will be among the prioritised category in the roll out.”
The social media is in an uproar about the whole issue.