The DA is fighting a plan by the government to collect private data about medical scheme members from the Council for Medical Schemes (CMS).
The DA’s Shadow Minister of Health, Wilmot James, presented evidence of what is believed to be unlawful conduct by the health authorities.
James presented a letter from Minister of Health Aaron Motsoaledi, in which he requested the CMS to collect private data about medical scheme members to maintain a “Beneficiary Registry”.
“His outrageous request – to collect very private, sensitive information, to which the government has no right – is unconstitutional,” said James.
He said it is in violation of the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI), Act No.4 of 2013.
James said this plan poses a security risk to individual citizens and members of medical aid schemes.
The minister’s request claimed to be for purposes of “monitoring the impact of current policies and identifying medical scheme members who access services in the public sector”.
“The CMS, then under registrar Daniel Lehutjo, has turned the request into a directive, a copy of which we have in our possession.”
Many medical scheme principals, however, refused to divulge the information.
“A legal opinion we sought on the matter has confirmed that Motsoaledi’s request overreaches.”
“The state has no right to our personal information and the CMS has no business in providing it. It cannot be that national government asks a national institution to break our own laws.”
The DA will lodge a complaint in terms of Section 74(1) read with section 75 of POPI with the Information Regulator against the CMS.