One Nation leader Pauline Hanson erupted during a Senate hearing last Thursday when executives at Pfizer Australia said no one was ‘forced’ to take the Covid vaccine.
Hanson questioned representatives from Pfizer and pharmaceutical giant Moderna about the effectiveness of vaccine mandates during the Covid pandemic, later saying their responses were “pathetic” and “arrogant.”
Neither Pfizer nor Moderna enforced compulsory vaccination in Australia, and the shot was always optional; however, many industries and public service departments had vaccine mandates during the pandemic, some of which still apply today.
The questioning took place at a Senate Education and Employment Legislation Committee hearing on a bill Senator Hanson had introduced called the COVID-19 Vaccination Status (Prevention of Discrimination) Bill 2022, which would examine the discrimination based on a person’s Covid-19 vaccination status.
Pfizer Australia and New Zealand National Medical Director Krishan Thiru and Head of Regulatory Affairs Brian Hewitt led the pharmaceutical company’s hearing.
At one point during the tense proceedings, Dr. Hewitt rejected the claim that Australians were “forced” to get a Covid shot.
Pauline Hanson (pictured) erupted during a Senate hearing last Thursday when Pfizer Australia executives said no one was ‘forced’ to take the Covid vaccine
Senator Hanson was skeptical of this claim, asking Dr Hewitt: ‘Were you in Australia during Covid-19?
‘He must have been fully aware that people, nurses, doctors, people to have their jobs, to keep their jobs, were forced to get vaccinated.
‘Now, do you retract your statement that they were not forced?’
Dr. Hewitt rejected the claim once again, stating that he “strongly believed… that no one was required” to get a covid vaccine.
“Vaccination mandates or requirements are determined by governments and health authorities,” he added.
“I think everyone was offered the opportunity to get vaccinated or not to get vaccinated.”
Senator Hanson responded, telling the Pfizer representative: “A lot of Australians will disagree with you on that.”
The conservative firebrand was highly critical of pharmaceutical representatives when she spoke to Daily Mail Australia after the hearing.
Pfizer Australia and New Zealand National Medical Director Krishan Thiru (right) and Head of Regulatory Affairs Brian Hewitt (left) led the pharmaceutical company’s hearing.
One Nation frontman questioned Dr Hewitt over his rejection of the claim that Australians were “forced” to take the Covid vaccine
“Their responses were pathetic,” he said.
“They evaded the questions and didn’t want to be there. They were rude and arrogant.
Senator Hanson had “lobbied” for the Senate investigation and claimed that Pfizer and Moderna had initially “refused” to attend.
He then contacted Tony Sheldon, chairman of the Education and Employment Legislation Committee, to tell both companies that they “had to appear” at the Senate committee hearing.
“It was pathetic to say the least and I blame our governments for forcing this on the people,” he continued.
Sen. Hanson recalled at one point asking about the rare side effects of the vaccine, which she said prompted a delayed response from Moderna representatives.
‘I asked Moderna: ‘What do you say to those people with side effects from the Covid vaccine?’ They were stumped,” she said.
Senator Hanson told Daily Mail Australia that both Pfizer and Moderna initially refused to take part in the hearing, claiming that their representatives “evaded questions”.
Covid vaccinations are voluntary for Australians, but some industries still require workers to get vaccinated. (Pictured: A woman being vaccinated in Whalan, Sydney, in September 2021)
Senator Hanson expressed her scathing views on vaccine mandates and her concern for people whose livelihoods have been affected by them.
“They came up with a vaccine that was only 12 months in the making before governments forced people to inject it into their arms,” he raged.
‘I’m concerned that people have lost their jobs because of (the mandates). Firefighters, defense personnel, federal police, nurses.
“To this day, people still can’t go back to their jobs because of the mandate.”
Covid vaccinations are voluntary for Australians, but some industries still require workers to get vaccinated.