Why this court case?

The Minister of Health’s health regulations of 4 May 2022, made in terms of the National Health Act, heralded a new era of state interference and health monitoring. It was aimed at compelling businesses, churches, schools, expos, stadiums and other entities in civil society through criminal punitive measures to divide people into classes based on vaccination status and to discriminate among them. Businesses were used as monitoring agents of the state to enforce discriminatory health measures on clients against their will.

Sakeliga approached the court to challenge the new health monitoring regime and to prevent it from being entrenched in further state policies. Owing to the pressure of court cases initiated by Sakeliga and others against the health regulations, the Minister shortly thereafter withdrew the major and most controversial parts of his 4 May regulations. The court case, however, is continuing and the focus now is on the remaining regulations and the unacceptable semblance of a public consultation process having been followed. The continued legal action is preventing the government from trying to enforce health monitoring measures on businesses, churches, schools and others in future.

Case details

Status: Active

Case commences: 19 May 2022

Court: High Court: Pretoria

Next court date:
TBA. The case has been removed from the urgent roll, as the minister has for the largest part repealed his 4 May regulations.


11 August 2022
​Sakeliga’s legal team writes a letter to the Minister’s legal team, demanding that Prof Karim’s affidavit be withdrawn. The statement is irrelevant to the initial record of decision-making that the Minister filed.
13 July 2022
​Sakeliga files a replying affidavit in the case, and hereby responds to the minister’s answering affidavit of 22 June.
22 June 2022
​The Minister of Health files an answering affidavit in the case, just after repealing most of the regulations.
8 June 2022
​Sakeliga files an amended notice of motion and supplementary founding affidavit, after having considered the record of decision-making in terms of Rule 53 of the court rules.
25 May 2022
Sakeliga receives the respondents’ record of decision-making in terms of the court rules. The record reveals that a contemptuous consultation process was followed by the Department of Health and that the Minister ignored the advice of his own advisers when he promulagated the regulations.​
19 May 2022Sakeliga serves court papers on Health Minister Joe Phaahla, President Cyril Ramaphosa and others. Sakeliga is asking the court to declare unlawful and unconstitutional and set aside the health regulations promulgated by Minister Phaahla on 4 May 2022.
13 May 2022Sakeliga writes to the Minister and demands that the regulations of 4 May 2022 be withdrawn by 18 May.
4 May 2022Health Minister Joe Phaahla promulgates health regulations in the night hours of 4 May that severely infringe on institutions and people’s freedoms and rights.


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