Lima, Peru, Feb 19, 2021 / 15:55 pm
The Peruvian bishops’ conference on Thursday condemned the country’s vaccine scandal, in which hundreds of prominent figures took advantage of their positions to receive coronavirus vaccination out of turn.
Among those who received early vaccination is Archbishop Nicolas Girasoli, apostolic nuncio to Peru.
In a Feb. 18 statement the Peruvian bishops censured the misuse "of the vaccines entrusted to our authorities for the sake of research and the health of all Peruvians." The conference said that "this shows a new face of the monster of corruption and the crisis in ethics and values."
"It’s inconceivable that doctors, nurses, police, public servants and so many other volunteers should continue to die while a callous group seeks its own interests," the bishops said, demanding that "these actions be duly investigated and punished."
This week a list was published of 487 people who were vaccinated early with doses from the Chinese company Sinopharm. These doses accompanied ones that were being used in clinical trials.
Among those who received the early doses from Sinopharm are former president Martín Vizcarra, his wife, and his brother. Vizcarra was removed from office by the parliament over unrelated corruption allegations in November 2020.
The former Minister of Foreign Relations, Elizabeth Astete, and the former director of Science and Technology of the same ministry, are on the list as well.
The list also includes the former Minister of Health, Pilar Mazzetti, who had said that she would be the last to be vaccinated in the healthcare sector; two former vice ministers; and Dr. Germán Málaga Rodríguez, who directed the Sinopharm vaccine trials at Cayetano Heredia University.