Labour Party leader Alan Kelly got into a heated row with Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly over the government’s vaccine rollout, accusing Donnelly of being “incompetent.”
Speaking at the Dáil today, Health Minster Stephen Donnelly told TDs that he expects there to be an average of one million Covid-19 vaccine doses are delivered into Ireland for the months of April, May and June, but said he was “reluctant to give specific forecast figures that we all know are going to change”.
It was this statement that Labour Leader Alan Kelly took issue with and asked the Health Minister: ““What’s the point of you even coming in here?”
Mr Kelly then told the Dáil that Minister Donnelly had repeatedly ignored his requests for a note on vaccine delivery for the last week of March and first week of April.
Tensions began to rise as Mr Kelly accused the Health Minister of putting on a “charade” that “is a waste of time if you’re not going to answer questions.”
“Transparency is your friend here. Giving out the estimates is what you should be doing. The fact that you come in here to the Dáil and say that you don’t want to give it out isn’t acceptable.
“It’s not acceptable. This isn’t about having confidence in you, this is about being incompetent.”
In response to Mr Kelly’s accusations, Minister Donnelly said that Mr Kelly “had the right to make” them and added that he had the “most detailed figures” he could give, but that Kelly hadn’t left him any time during the session to give them.
Earlier today, the World Health Organisation slammed Europe for its slow rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines.
WHO Director for Europe Hans Kluge blamed the slow rollout on in prolonging the pandemic.
To date, 806,541 doses of Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in Ireland with the Department of Health changing their rollout plan to prioritise those who are most vulnerable to COVID-19.