3 questions about mandatory Covid-19 vaccinations

With the fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic currently raging in South Africa, many citizens are living with fear and uncertainty about the future. Many have already lost loved ones, while numerous families are worried about their people being hospitalized due to Covid-19.

The toll that the Covid-19 pandemic has taken in South African society so far will probably never be fully calculated. In many ways, people’s life patterns were touched and had to be adapted to a new reality. In view of the unknown health risks, some of the temporary adjustments were permissible.

As the positive impact of vaccinations became clear, a debate arose as to whether Covid-19 vaccinations should be enforced. This is especially argued against the background of new Covid-19 variants emerging. The decision by President Ramaphosa to reconsider his previous decision – that vaccinations will not be mandatory – puts this whole debate on a new level and requires the citizens of South Africa to take a stand.

In order to take a responsible stand, three questions should be asked:

1) How are individuals’ human rights affected by forced vaccinations?

2) Is the enforcement of vaccinations constitutional?

3) Is coercion an acceptable democratic modus operandi?

Free State Agriculture (FSA) is convinced that individual freedom is a cornerstone of a free and prosperous community and society. Content is given to this freedom by both the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. The right of every individual to make decisions about his / her own body is enshrined in this. This is a type of inalienable property that everyone has. This means that anyone who decides to take the vaccine should be able to do so and thus receive the promised protection against Covid-19. It also means that the decision of those who decide not to get vaccinated, despite the risks, be respected.

A forced vaccination program will undermine individuals’ freedom of choice and right to physical integrity and FSA is therefore convinced that forced vaccinations are not the right plan of action.

According to Francois Wilken, President of Free State Agriculture (FSA), Covid-19 will not always have the impact it currently has. “It would be foolish to give up or suspend permanent and fundamental rights in an attempt to manage a temporary risk. Rather, the focus should be on enforcing national laws against violent criminals and corrupt government officials,” Wilken says.

3 vrae oor gedwonge Covid-19 inentings

Met die vierde vlaag van die Covid-19 pandemie wat tans in Suid-Afrika woed leef talle landsburgers met vrees en onsekerheid oor die toekoms. Baie het reeds geliefdes aan die dood afgestaan terwyl talle gesinne bekommerd is oor hul mense wat weens Covid-19 gehospitaliseer is.

Die tol wat die Covid-19 pandemie in die Suid-Afrikaanse samelewing tot dusver geëis het sal waarskynlik nooit ten volle bereken kan word nie. In baie opsigte is mense se lewenspatrone aangeraak en moes daar by ‘n nuwe realiteit aangepas word. Gesien in die lig van die onbekende gesondheidsrisiko’s was sekere van die tydelike aanpassings geoorloof.

Na mate die positiewe impak van inentings duidelik word, het ‘n debat ontstaan oor of Covid-19 inentings afgedwing word. Dit word veral geargumenteer teen die agtergrond van nuwe Covid-19 variante wat te voorskyn kom. Die besluit deur president Ramaphosa om sy vorige besluit – dat inentings nie verplig sal word nie – te heroorweeg plaas hierdie hele debat op ‘n nuwe terrein en vereis dat die burgery standpunt inneem.

Ten einde ‘n verantwoordelike standpunt in te neem behoort 3 vrae gestel te word:

  • Hoe word individue se menseregte deur gedwonge inentings geaffekteer?
  • Is die afdwing van inentings grondwetlik?
  • Is dwang ‘n aanvaarbare demokratiese modus operandi?

Vrystaat Landbou is oortuig dat individuele vryheid ‘n hoeksteen van ‘n vry en voorspoedige gemeenskap en samelewing is. Inhoud word aan hierdie vryheid gegee deur beide die handves van menseregte en die grondwet. Die reg van elke individu om besluite oor sy/haar eie liggaam te mag neem is hierin verskans. Hierdie is ‘n tipe onvervreembare eiendomsreg wat elkeen het. Dit beteken dat elkeen wat besluit om die inenting te neem dit behoort te kan doen en so die beloofde beskerming teen Covid-19 te kan kry. Dit beteken ook dat diegene wat besluit om nie inenting te neem nie, ten spyte van die risiko’s, se besluit gerespekteer moet word.  ‘n Geforseerde inentings program sal individue se keusevryheid en reg tot liggaamlike integriteit ondermyn en is Vrystaat Landbou daarom oortuig dat gedwonge inentings nie die regte plan van aksie is nie.

Volgens Francois Wilken, President van Vrystaat Landbou (VL), gaan Covid-19 nie vir altyd die impak hê wat dit tans het nie. “Dit sal dwaas wees om permanente en fundamentele regte prys te gee of tydelik op te skort om ‘n tydelike risiko te probeer bestuur”. “Daar behoort eerder gefokus te word op die afdwing van landswette teen geweldsmisdadigers en korrupte staatsamptenare”, het Wilken bygevoeg.