BEE company ‘Biovac’ first to get Covid-19 distribution tender

Opinion by Political Correspondent

BEE company ‘Biovac’ first to get Covid-19 distribution tender
BEE company 'Biovac' first to get Covid-19 distribution tender

BEE company Biovac first to get Covid-19 distribution tender and a controlling director is also a director of Ramaphosa’s business interest MTN. The first tender was awarded by the government to distribute Covid-19 vaccines. The Biovac Institute was appointed to do the distribution of the first batch of vaccines which arrived in South Africa. It is intended to be distributed to health workers.

But who and what is Biovac? Biovac Institute is a private company. It had its origin in 2003 when the Department of Health entered into an agreement with private shareholders to create a company which would have a monopoly on the distribution of vaccines in South Africa. Biovac currently has the monopoly to distribute vaccines on behalf of the Department of Health.

Biovac Institute only started manufacturing any kind of vaccine last year when a technology transfer agreement was concluded with the international pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur.

Biovac Institute is today controlled by the Immunotek company belonging to its owner Dr Morena Makhoana. He is also the CEO of the Biovac Institute. Dr Makhoana is the biggest shareholder in Immunotek which controls the Biovac Consortium which has a 52% shareholding in the Biovac Institute.

The directors of Immunotek is Selwyn Kahanowitz, Martin Kahanovitz, Motsei Mhlongo and Nkululeko Leonard Sowazi. Sowazi is also a director of MTN with which President Cyril Ramaphosa has strong ties with. Makhoana has been working for Biovac since 2004. He came through the ranks of the organization and led the buyout of the Biovac Consortium.

SOURCEOpinion by Political Correspondent