Although Spanish politicians and high-ranking officials are not part of the groups with a preference to receive COVID-19 vaccines, some of them have been vaccinated by dodging the order of precedence. This discovery has sparked a growing controversy in Spain about the ethics of its leaders.
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"In less than 48 hours, three public officials have resigned for 'jumping the queue' for vaccines," the local outlet RTVE reported, mentioning that they include Murcia's health counselor and two hospital managers in the Basque Country.
The COVID-19 vaccine was also administered to Ceuta city's Health Counselor Javier Guerrero who is being supported by the right-wing Popular Party.
To justify their actions, some politicians have argued that officials involved in administrative tasks are also fighting the pandemic. Small town officials have also said they received the vaccines to prevent them from "going to waste."
The scandal has even reached high-ranking members of the Spanish army who do not belong to high-risk groups.
"The latest case to come to light affects the Chief of Defense Staff (JEMAD) General Miguel Vilarroya... and other commanders of the Defense Staff (EMAD)," the news agency EFE reported, and recalled that the authorities argued that they were the next to receive the vaccine because of their age.
Amid the controversy, President Pedro Sanchez said that the vaccination plan is working in Spain, which has become the third European country that has administered the most doses.
Since the vaccination campaign began on December 27, the health system has administered 82 percent of the 1.3 million doses purchased from Pfizer and Moderna. As of Friday morning, Spain had reported 2,456,675 COVID-19 infections and 55,041 deaths.