by Amy Kelly, Daily Clout:
A newly disclosed contract between Pfizer and the Republic of South Africa government reveals that as of March 30, 2021, months after the public rollout of its COVID vaccine in the United States and United Kingdom, Pfizer admitted:
- Its vaccine was still being studied.
- Long-term effects of the vaccine were not known.
- Efficacy of the vaccine was not known.
- Possible adverse effects of the vaccine were not known.
Shockingly, the South African government agreed to purchase the Pfizer vaccine despite all of the above.
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Following a refused access to information request to South Africa’s National Department of Health (NDoH), the Health Justice Initiative (HJI) launched legal proceedings on February 22, 2022, for the release of the Republic of South Africa’s COVID-19 vaccine contracts with manufacturers Covax, Janssen, Pfizer, and Serum, as well as any “applicable agreements with relevant companies and entities.” On August 17, 2023, the Pretoria High Court’s ruling in favor of HJI forced the South African government to releaseall COVID-19 vaccine procurement contracts. This release includes three Pfizer contract documents:
- Pfizer – Manufacturing and Supply Agreement.
- Pfizer – Amendment to Manufacturing and Supply Agreement.
- Pfizer – Binding Term Sheet.
The first document listed above is titled, “MANUFACTURING AND SUPPLY AGREEMENT BETWEEN PFIZER LABORATORIES PROPRIETARY LIMITED AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA ACTING THROUGH THE NATIONAL DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH OF SOUTH AFRICA (‘NDOH’)” and is dated “30 March 2021.” Note that March 30, 2021, is over three-and-a-half months after the public rollout of Pfizer’s vaccine in the United States and four months after the public rollout in the United Kingdom. The contract and other documents are still being reviewed by this author. However, so far, two sections are of particular interest.
Section 5.5., Purchaser Acknowledgement [p. 21]:
“Purchaser [Republic of South Africa] acknowledges that the Vaccine and materials related to the Vaccine, and their components and constituent materials are being rapidly developed due to the emergency circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic and will continue to be studied after provision of the Vaccine to Purchaser under this Agreement. Purchaser further acknowledges that the long-term effects and efficacy of the Vaccine are not currently known and that there may be adverse effects of the Vaccine that are not currently known. Further, to the extent applicable, Purchaser acknowledges that the Product shall not be serialized.” [Emphasis added.]
The above section clearly demonstrates that as of March 30, 2021, months after the public started taking its vaccine, Pfizer disclosed it did not know if its vaccine worked or if it was harmful or not.
Section 8, INDEMNIFICATION, and its subsections as noted [pp. 23-25]:
“8.1 Indemnification by Purchaser. Purchaser [South African government] hereby agrees to indemnify, defend and hold harmless Pfizer, BioNTech, each of their Affiliates, contractors, sub-contractors, licensors, licensees, sub-licensees, distributors, contract manufacturers, services providers, clinical trial researchers, third parties to whom Pfizer or BioNTech or any of their respective Affiliates may directly or indirectly owe an indemnity based on the research, development, manufacture, distribution, commercialization or use of the Vaccine, and each of the officers, directors, employees and other agents and representatives, and the respective predecessors, successors and assigns of any of the foregoing (“Indemnitees”), from and against any and all suits, claims, actions, demands, losses, damages, liabilities, settlements, penalties, fines, costs and expenses (including, without limitation, reasonable attorneys’ and other counsels’ fees and other expenses of an investigation or litigation), whether sounding in contract, tort (delict), intellectual property, or any other theory, and whether legal, statutory, equitable or otherwise by any natural or legal person (collectively, “Losses”) caused by, arising out of, relating to, or resulting from the Vaccine, including but not limited to any stage of design, development, investigation, formulation, testing, clinical testing, manufacture, labeling, packaging, transport, storage, distribution, marketing, promotion, sale, purchase, licensing, donation, dispensing, prescribing, administration, provision, or use of the Vaccine, any information, instructions, advice or guidance provided by Pfizer, or BioNTech or any of their respective Affiliates and relating to the use of the Vaccine, or any processing or transfer of anyone’s personal information processed and transferred by Purchaser to the Indemnitees (“Covered Activities”). [Emphasis added.]
8.2 Assumption of Defense by Purchaser. The Indemnitee(s) shall notify Purchaser of Losses for which it is seeking indemnification pursuant hereto (“Indemnified Claims”). Upon such notification, the lndemnitee(s) shall have the option to conduct and control the defense or to require Purchaser to promptly assume conduct and control of the defense of such Indemnified Claims with counsel acceptable to lndemnitee(s), whether or not the Indemnified Claim is rightfully brought; provided, however, that Purchaser shall provide advance notice in writing of any proposed compromise or settlement of any Indemnified Claim and in no event may Purchaser compromise or settle any Indemnified Claim without Indemnitee(s)’s prior written consent, such consent not to be unreasonably withheld. Indemnitee(s) shall reasonably cooperate with Purchaser in the defense of any Indemnified Claims conducted and controlled by Purchaser. [Emphasis added.]
8.3 Participation Rights. Each Indemnitee shall have the right to retain its own counsel and to participate in Purchaser’s defense of any Indemnified Claim, at its own cost and expense except as set forth below. A failure by the Indemnitee(s) to give notice of Indemnified Claims or to offer to tender the defense of the action or suit pursuant to this Section 8.3 (Participation Rights) shall not limit the obligation of Purchaser under this Section 8 (Indemnification), except and only to the extent Purchaser is actually prejudiced thereby. [Emphasis added.]
8.4 Assumption of Defense. Notwithstanding the foregoing and without prejudice to Section 12.5, Pfizer, directly or through any of its Affiliates or through BioNTech, may elect to assume control of the defense of an Indemnified Claim (a) within thirty (30) days of lndemnitee’s notice to Purchaser of the Indemnified Claim or (b) at any time if, in Pfizer’s sole discretion: (i) Purchaser fails to timely assume the defense of or reasonably defend such Indemnified Claim(s) in good faith to the satisfaction of Pfizer (or Pfizer’s Affiliates and BioNTech); or (ii) Pfizer believes (or any of Pfizer’s Affiliates or BioNTech believe) in good faith that a bona fide conflict exists between Indemnitee(s) and Purchaser with respect to an Indemnified Claim hereunder. Upon written notice of such election, Pfizer shall have the right to assume control of such defense (directly or through either one of its Affiliates or BioNTech), and Purchaser shall pay (as incurred and on demand), all Losses, including, without limitation, the reasonable attorneys’ fees and other expenses incurred by Indemnitee(s), in connection with the Indemnified Claim. In all events, Purchaser shall cooperate with Indemnitee(s) in the defense, settlement or compromise of the Indemnified Claim. [Emphasis added.]
8.5 Privileges and Immunities. Purchaser acknowledges that its indemnification obligations under this Agreement are (a) expressly in addition to, and not limited by, any Privileges and Immunities, and (b) do not waive or relinquish Indemnitees’ rights to any Privileges and Immunities.
8.6 Costs. Costs and expenses, including, without limitation, fees and disbursements of counsel, incurred by the Indemnitee(s) in connection with any Indemnified Claim shall be reimbursed on a quarterly basis by Purchaser, without prejudice to Purchaser’s right to refund in the event that Purchaser is ultimately held in a final, non-appealable judgment or award to be not obligated to indemnify the Indemnitee(s). [Emphasis added.]”
One of the key takeaways from Section 8, above, is that if Pfizer or “…BioNTech, each of their Affiliates, contractors, sub-contractors, licensors, licensees, sub-licensees, distributors, contract manufacturers, services providers, clinical trial researchers, third parties to whom Pfizer or BioNTech or any of their respective Affiliates may directly or indirectly owe an indemnity based on the research, development, manufacture, distribution, commercialization or use of the Vaccine, and each of the officers, directors, employees and other agents and representatives, and the respective predecessors, successors and assigns of any of the foregoing…” are sued at any time and for any reason, then the South African government agrees to pay not only its own legal costs but also those of Pfizer and its affiliates. Additionally, if Pfizer loses in a court case, the South African government agrees to pay any judgment handed down.