Labour frontbencher Rosena Allin-Khan issues grovelling apology after ‘inappropriate and wrong’ tweets suggesting vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi jumped the queue for jabs
- Labour MP sorry for ‘inappropriate and wrong’ tweets about Nadhim Zahawi
- Rosena Allin-Khan apologised for fuelling false claims he jumped vaccine queue
- Spat came as government tries to get the crucial jabs to the most vulnerable
A Labour frontbencher today issued a grovelling apology after falsely suggesting vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi jumped the queue for jabs.
Shadow health minister Rosena Allin-Khan said it had been ‘inappropriate and wrong’ to raise ‘unsubstantiated’ claims about her political opponent on Twitter.
The apology came in the early hours of the morning after she tweeted at 11.31pm last night saying she had heard ‘rumours’ that Mr Zahawi and his family had been vaccinated in Wandsworth.
‘Nadhim, can you please tell us if it is true?’ she wrote. ‘ I really hope it is not unless you meet the necessary criteria.’
However, by 1.08am the Labour MP, an A&E doctor, completely retracted the claims.
‘I have deleted my earlier tweets which were inappropriate and wrong. I regret sharing unsubstantiated claims about the Minister and I apologise to him and his family,’ she wrote.
Shadow health minister Rosena Allin-Khan said it had been ‘inappropriate and wrong’ to raise ‘unsubstantiated’ claims about Nadhim Zahawi on Twitter
Labour MP, an A&E doctor, completely retracted the claims at 1.08am this morning
Labour sources indicated that Dr Allin-Khan had been told to delete the message (pictured) and apologise. She is not expected to face any further disciplinary action
Labour sources indicated that Dr Allin-Khan had been told to delete the message and apologise. She is not expected to face any further disciplinary action.
Mr Zahawi, who is overseeing the vaccine rollout, has previously revealed that he is taking part in the trials of the Novovax version – and was pictured having a jab in November.
The episode came as the government scrambles to ramp up its vaccination drive, with mutant coronavirus threatening to bring the country to a standstill again.
A strict priority list has been set out for distributing the jabs to make best use of supplies, with the most vulnerable and health workers getting the protection first.
As the first supplies of the Oxford vaccine arrived in the UK yesterday, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Jonathan Van-Tam – who has become the trusted face of Downing Street press conferences during the crisis – predicted that ‘tens of millions of doses’ will be available by the end of March.
A senior Government source last night said that the 15million jabs needed to protect those most at risk could be delivered by mid-March.
Vaccinating that vulnerable group is seen as crucial in releasing Britain from the crippling effects of lockdown.
Writing exclusively in The Mail on Sunday, Prof Van-Tam rejects criticism that changing the period between the two doses of the Oxford and Pfizer vaccines is confusing and potentially dangerous.
The first stocks of the Oxford University/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine have arrived in the UK
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