1. The Commander in Chief requested medical support from the Republic of Cuba to assist in curving the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in South Africa. In response to the Commander in Chief’s request, the Cuban Government offered a team that consisted of a Medical Health Care Brigade. The Department of Defence (DOD) was allocated with military health care professionals. The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) chattered an aircraft to transport the Cuban medical practitioners, who arrived in South Africa on 27 April 2020.
In adherence to the World Health Organisation COVID-19 regulations, the DOD established a quarantine centre for personnel entering the borders of the Republic of South Africa (RSA). The Cuban Medical Health Brigade was quarantined at the identified centre. On completion of the quarantine, there was a delay in securing accommodation in the different Provinces due to the Level 5 national lockdown.
Consequently both military and the civilian Medical Health Brigade from Cuba were transported in the SANDF chattered aircraft at the cost of R8, 227, 060. 00, and on arrival they were accommodated and quarantined at the identified quarantine centre at the cost of R22, 000, 000.
2. The DOD chattered an aircraft to transport the Cuban Medical Brigade in order to assist with the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic within the SANDF. Therefore with the pandemic having affected the whole country, the department carried the cost. In the interest of the national objective to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the DOD paid for accommodation, chattering and quarantine.