An ineffective response and a lack of transparency have lowered people’s trust in the government’s handling of the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

It is important for people to retain a little bit of skepticism when it comes to accepting the words of so-called experts, especially if they are part of an old establishment that is seen to be very resistant to change. Uncomfortable truths, for instance, have always attracted abuse, ridicule and persecution, and those who dare speak out have always been regarded as dangerous heretics.

Even today, thinkers who dare question the establishment are being demonized and canceled by a modern culture that appears to offer a kind of constrained freedom that proves restrictive and destructive.

Oftentimes they are simply discredited for voicing out less accepted opinions from the norm. Doctors and scientists who dare question the officially accepted line regarding the use of drugs or vaccines, especially on the COVID-19 pandemic, are likely to find themselves without their jobs or have their grants denied. In some cases, their licenses are taken away if they dare question the officially approved dictates.

“Guided by science” does not work

Governments keep telling their people they are “guided by the science” when it comes to making decisions about the pandemic, but their mantra simply does not fit with the facts. They are responding to the pandemic by covering up data and bypassing public procurement rules, undermining the trust in health systems.

Contracts for medical goods and services have also become the norm, and data on COVID-19 cases and deaths have been manipulated. Authorities have used this pandemic as an opportunity to gut public bodies and shut them down.

Jonathan Cushing, who leads global health and anti-corruption non-profit Transparency International, said this is a tale of two pandemics. “You have COVID-19 and then what we’ve seen over the past year is this lack of transparency – the utilization of direct procurement legislation because of the emergency needs at the time.”

He said there had been repeated cases of corruption, and that is the second pandemic in many ways. Malpractice has also been reported around the world, including countries such as the Philippines and Uganda, as well as cases being raised in Kenya and Latin America.

Even Tanzania President John Magufuli had been a victim of his own refusal to acknowledge the seriousness of COVID-19. He even declared Tanzania “coronavirus-free” and had the government stop publishing data on case numbers while disease surveillance and advocacy wound down. When he died, officially from heart problems, many connected it with COVID-19.

For countries that are publishing statistics, many have manipulated available data, which is a key marker of the COVID-19 corruption. Transparency International said this could lead to devastating consequences, including resource misallocation, spikes in case rates and an increased mistrust in governments when reality does not match with the official version of the events.

Those who refused to follow the government lines have also faced repercussions, while COVID-19 vaccine producers had governments around the world sign non-disclosure agreements to keep prices per dose secret, leading to more lack of transparency and potential risk of corruption depending on what the agreements entail.

The first and the biggest casualty of coronavirus corruption is public trust, as skewed statistics and questionable procurement processes have hampered the pandemic response.

“The consequences for societies could reach beyond the immediate disease threat. Without open data and open science, communities will be left out of important conversations and in the dark,” Cushing said.

Watch the video below to know more about the lies governments tell their people about the COVID-19 pandemic.

This video is from the Son of the Republic channel on Brighteon.com.

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