As the country plans to roll out its first batch of COVID-19 vaccines, some members of the Rastafarian community in Bloemfontein, in the Free State, say using herbs is the best remedy in fighting COVID-19.

The residents say they won’t take the COVID-19 vaccine because it is a western medicine.

“I’m not gonna take it. Me actually I use what is Black; so it’s from my roots. I don’t use what is made by man. I use what is made by God; the One who created me. He gave us herbs,” says Wonderful Mokopanele.

“I’m not gonna take vaccine; I’m a herb man. I use herbs. The reason is that we never had public induction. No campaigns, no workshop. We are not informed what are the consequences of vaccine,” adds Stanley Morake.

Some traditional healers want to know the contents of the AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson vaccines:

SABC News also caught up with Rastafarians who are traders.

They are complaining that their livelihoods have also been affected by the coronavirus lockdown.

“Our youth – they can’t even go to school. It’s lockdown – it’s just not normal. It’s very affecting us,” says one trader.

“We’ve got responsibilities and families – so it’s been hard for us. The President must remove this thing (lockdown).”

“It’s very difficult for us but we are trying as you see we are still cooking. Other people they come buy,” they say.

They are some of many other South Africans who have expressed concern over the impact of the lockdown on business and jobs.

However, the government has maintained that it will continue to prioritise the safety of South Africans while also endeavouring to save people’s livelihoods – until an effective treatment for the virus is found.



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