The Policy Coherence for Sustainable Development (PCSD) agenda is regarded as the principal instrument to ensure the coherent alignment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with domestic policies. Due to PCSD's genesis in the foreign aid donor–recipient relationship, there is a shortage of research on policymakers in developing countries' perspective on PCSD. In this article, interviews with South African policymakers are used to evaluate the applicability of PCSD beyond the donor–recipient relationship critically. Emphasis is placed on vertical coherence. Policymakers are found to emphasise (a) the need to prioritise the SDGs' targets in terms of national priorities, (b) the importance of attending to institutional issues such as a lack of accountability and efficiency, (c) addressing the skills mismatch of capacity development interventions, and (d) engaging party politics.