Health advocacy organisation the African Alliance says it has filed a complaint with the Judicial Services Commission against Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng following his “false and dangerous” vaccine claims.
The African Alliance said Mogoeng led a crowd at Tembisa Hospital in prayer, saying: “If there be any [Covid-19] vaccine that is the work of the devil meant to infuse 666 in the lives of the people, meant to corrupt their DNA… may it be destroyed by fire.”
It says Mogoeng’s comments, which he has defended, imply that vaccines can be dangerous with no factual basis.
African Alliance head Tian Johnson says: “By doing this, his statements as a highly visible civil servant undermine the public’s confidence in life-saving and scientifically-tested vaccines.
“Let’s be clear: Vaccines are not made by the devil and do not change your DNA.
“The real danger is that statements such as Mogoeng’s decrease the public trust in vaccines, and that hurts all of us.”
He said the Chief Justice should be aware that national regulators such as South African Health Products Regulatory Authority exist to ensure that products like vaccines are safe.
Johnson says in making unfounded claims about vaccines, the African Alliance believes Mogoeng acted in a manner incompatible with or unbecoming of a holder of a judicial office and violated the Code of Judicial Conduct in relation to the Judicial Services Commission Act.
“We now call on the Judicial Conduct Committee to urgently review and deal with the complaint to protect the public investments made in a Covid-19 vaccine.”
Mogoeng said he was misunderstood and said he was praying that God destroys any vaccine containing “666” – the number Christians believe to be the mark of the devil.