TAC, Achmat 2003 newsmakers
January 14, 2004
PRETORIA - The Treatment Action Campaign Aids drug lobby group and its
leader Zachie Achmat have been jointly named the National Press
Club's newsmakers of 2003.
The Pretoria-based club said in a statement on Tuesday: "The
TAC's use of legal and moral arguments led to South Africa
importing cheaper generics of Aids drugs.
"This victory raised hope for millions of Aids sufferers to
finally gain access to drugs that could prolong their lives."
Achmat has been at the forefront of campaigns for the provision
of drugs to HIV-positive South Africans. He and the TAC were
nominated for the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize, and Achmat was voted one
of 35 heroes of 2003 by Time Magazine.
He was also elected ThisDay newspaper's person of the year.
Previous recipients of the press club's Newsmaker of the Year
award include President Thabo Mbeki, former presidents Nelson
Mandela and F W de Klerk, the SA Air Force, the national rugby team
and late cricket captain Hansie Cronje.
Other nominations for the award included the teenager initially
called Happy Sindane, who claimed to have been kidnapped by a black
woman from a white family as a child, the men who accused national
public prosecutions director Bulelani Ngcuka of being an apartheid
spy -- Mac Maharaj and Mo Shaik, athlete Hestrie Cloete, as well as
the Springbok rugby team and its infamous "Kamp Staaldraad".
Ngcuka was the runner up, the press club said. - Sapa
Related links stories
TAC's Zackie Achmat nominated for Nobel Peace Prize [03/12/2003]
Roses and thorns for govt on World Aids Day [02/12/2003]