Nadhim Zahawi suffers furious backlash after bypassing question on vaccine target

Nadhim Zahawi grilled on UK vaccine numbers

The Vaccine Minister was asked specifically how many vaccines were ready to be administered and failed to provide a number during his interview with the BBC’s Lousie Minchin. The lack of details in Mr Zahawi’s answers alarmed some viewers who took to Twitter to share their thoughts on the vaccine rollout. 

Ms Minchin asked: “How many vaccines do you have ready to be put into someone’s arm?”

The Conservative MP replied: “So in terms of vaccines, in any manufacturing process the numbers tend to move batch to batch.

“There is a whole process around testing to make sure the regulator is happy with the batches.

“The worst thing you can do is have a problem with the actual quality of the vaccine.

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“That is why it is so important that those tests happen.”

He continued: “We have very good working relationships with both manufacturers, and we are confident that as they begin to increase their production we will be able to deploy.

“The NHS has a very good deployment plan and we will absolutely meet those numbers.

“You will begin to see that week on week.”

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The response however failed to appease some viewers, who discussed the Vaccine Minister’s lack of detail on social media.

One Twitter user said: “We have a Government that’s falling apart at the seams, can’t answer simple questions. Nadhim Zahawi the Vaccine Minister was torn apart this morning.”

Another tweeted: “Asked when he’ll reach target of 300,000 vaccines a day, Nadhim Zahawi tells BBC: ‘What I don’t want to do is bandy numbers around on the hoof’.

“But it’s the Prime Minister who said there’d be 13million by mid-February. He needs to explain how that laudable target will be met…”

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A third wrote: “Surely they’ve had time to plan for rolling out the vaccine?

“It’s not like it’s suddenly come as a surprise?”

And another user said: “I really, really, really really want the vaccine rollout to be a huge success. Our lives depend on it.

“Having seen Nadhim Zahawi regularly pop up on the telly over the past year defending every cock up this Government has made just makes me a tad jittery.”

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