Speech on the National Health Insurance Bill
ACDP MP, Marie Sukers

Issued by the ACDP Parliamentary Media Office

NHI Bill will collapse health sector because it proposes change with the ANC in charge

Jun 13, 2023

“Honourable Chairperson,

The ACDP rejects the NHI Bill in its current form.

We are of the opinion that the architecture of change requires critical elements to be present.

The question begs whether the lofty aims of universal health care, for all, can be achieved under this administration, and whether the legislation before this house, when implemented, will move us closer to this aim.

It is our assessment that the biggest hurdle to transformation is incapacity and a serious leadership deficit, over the last decade, that eroded trust in the government to deliver the most basic of services, never mind the total overhaul of the health sector. The consequences of this proposed legislation will be far-reaching and very costly, with the inevitable consequence that we may face an exodus out of the country by medical corporations and human capital.

The State, whose greatest failures are procurement and contract management, becomes the facilitator of services, and the single point of administration for health services.

This same State, under whose watch we procured Covid vaccines that expired before use, who touts a R7.4 billion loan for strategic vaccine procurement, with no indication to Parliament on what this was based on. The same State, under whose watch only 55% of facilities has status as ideal clinics.

Transformation requires moral integrity to advance its agenda. This critical element is the most important along with the capacity to deliver. Government has failed dismally to restore trust to prove that it can, in the slightest, champion transformation at any level. The poison in the water is corruption, at such a scale that it defies rationality and morality. During Covid we had both the previous Minister and the DG of the Health Department under suspension for alleged corruption to the value of over R80 million. Corruption has become the invader species which creates an environment that makes transformation, as an agenda, impossible.

This government is a study in failure and dysfunctionality – and that is not being unkind. It is a statement of fact. This Bill will collapse the health sector because, in its current form, it proposes change with the wrong agent in charge.”


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