PAPUA New Guinea’s Covid-19 National Pandemic Response Controller David Manning has welcomed the challenge by Madang Governor Peter Yama to file a Supreme Court reference to stop vaccinations in his province and the country.
Manning, who is also the Police Commissioner, said Yama was a mandated leader and had the right to seek legal advice on the Government’s voluntary vaccination programme.
“The use of AstraZeneca as a legally authorised vaccine against the Covid-19 and is internationally endorsed by the World Health Organisation,” he said. “The PNG Government is among many other governments who are demonstrating responsibility and responsiveness to the pandemic in protecting its health workers and frontline workers from this horrible situation.”
Manning said the National Control Centre and Health Department were ready to assist the courts in this matter.
Yama said he had instructed his lawyers to take action after the Supreme Court in the US overturned the universal vaccinations.
“After studying the decision, I will file a Supreme Court reference to stop the vaccinations of my people of Madang and the rest of the country,” he said.
“My reason for stopping the vaccination is that the vaccines, including AstraZeneca and others, should be properly tested and approved by our local scientists (at the Institute of Medical Research) before they can be used.”
Yama said he would not accept IMR’s brief reports without proper laboratory testing and the conclusion that it was safe for the people.
“My conscience is clear and for this reason, it is in the best interest of my people that I will not allow them to be used as guinea pigs.”
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