Greens questioning in the Senate COVID Committee today has confirmed the Morrison government has failed to join the COVAX global vaccine initiative despite the Prime Minister saying the world needs to share the vaccine.
Under questioning by Senator Richard Di Natale the Secretary of Health confirmed the government had not signed up to the main international effort to secure vaccine access globally, nor contributed a single dollar.
Quotes attributable to Greens Leader Adam Bandt:
“After all the rhetoric about supporting the global vaccine push, it is shocking that the Morrison government has failed to sign up to the international effort to ensure access to a vaccine and failed to put any money in.
“We are in a crisis and the government seems asleep at the wheel.”
Quotes attributable to Senator Richard Di Natale:
“The only way out of this pandemic is a vaccine yet the government's puny contribution to vaccine development and failure to sign up to multilateral or bilateral vaccine deals is putting Australia at the back of the queue.
“We can’t let Australia be a victim of ‘vaccine nationalism’. The Prime Minister needs to put his money where his mouth is and sign up to international effort and invest big dollars to ensure the vaccine is available to Australia and the world.”