While the U.S. and Canada prepare to receive the first doses of their COVID-19 vaccines, their neighbor to the south is making plans to orchestrate their own vaccine distribution plan.
On Wednesday, the Mexican government announced a contract with Pfizer for their COVID-19 vaccine, which was developed with German partner BioNTech SE. According to AFP, Mexico also announced agreements with Britain’s AstraZeneca and China’s CanSino Biologics to buy their vaccines, which are undergoing trials.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador previously stated that the government would ensure that the vaccine was freely available to all Mexicans. In a separate announcement, Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell stated that “Mexico’s military will help with the vaccination process.”
On Tuesday, Mexico’s Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said Pfizer’s vaccine could be administered in Mexico as soon as mid-December if approved by health regulators. Pfizer submitted details on the vaccine to Mexico’s regulators and is hoping to get approval in Mexico on the same timeline as the United States and Canada. “Pfizer – if Cofepris approves – will reach Mexico in December of this year,” Ebrard said on Twitter.
In the United States, Pfizer and Moderna have both applied to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use authorization of its COVID-19 vaccine. The FDA is set to discuss the emergency use authorization on Dec. 10. Foreign Minister Ebrard said once the vaccines are approved it would take about five days to ship them from laboratories in either the United States or Europe.
While much has been made about the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed plan to distribute vaccines around the United States, less is known about Mexico’s plans for vaccinating their population. However, a study of the Mexican governments response to COVID-19 reveals many of the same connections to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as seen in Operation Warp Speed and the COVID-19 operation.
The WHO’s COVAX Program, Bill Gates and Carlos Slim
In October, the Mexican government announced new agreements to obtain up to 198 million vaccine doses. In addition to making arrangements with Pfizer, Mexico is negotiating Phase 3 test vaccines from CanSino (China), Curevac (Germany), Janssen (United States), Novavax (United States), Sanofi-Pasteur (France), Sputnik V (Russia), and ReiThera, (Italy).
The vaccine negotiations came, in part, from Mexico’s participation in the World Health Organization’s COVAX Program. COVAX is co-led by Gavi, the Global Vaccine Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and WHO. These organizations state that COVAX was created “to accelerate the development and manufacture of COVID-19 vaccines, and to guarantee fair and equitable access for every country in the world.”
According to GAVI, once COVID-19 hit the world stage, political leaders called for a “solution” that would accelerate the development of vaccines, diagnostics, and therapeutics. GAVI calls COVAX “the world’s largest and most diverse portfolio of COVID-19 vaccines”, which they say represents the world’s “best hope” to bring “this pandemic to a swift end.”
COVAX itself is described as “the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator.” The ACT Accelerator was launched in April by the WHO, the European Commission and France. It includes four pillars: diagnostics, treatment, vaccines, and health system strengthening. The ACT Accelerator is another tool for collaboration to “accelerate the development, production, and equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines.”
Mexico is also one of more than 40 countries participating in the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility, or COVAX Facility. The COVAX Facility is another Gavi-coordinated project focused on new COVID-19 vaccines. The COVAX Facility promises to “ensure fair and equitable access to vaccines” using a framework created by the WHO.
When examining the funding and history of the WHO, GAVI, and CEPI we see one common denominator: the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Both GAVI and CEPI were co-founded and co-funded with funds from the Gates Foundation. In fact, CEPI was formally launched in 2017 in Davos, Switzerland at the World Economic Forum, the same WEF who is behind the push for The Great Reset.
As I outlined in part 2 of my investigation into Gates, both Bill Gates and the WHO have stepped onto the center stage as the world looks to them for answers about COVID-19. Presently, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is the number one non-state donor to the WHO. This means that with his money and influence inside the WHO, GAVI, CEPI, Wellcome Trust, and other health organizations, Gates is able to impact the direction of international health in a manner not seen since the days of the Rockefeller robber barons.
According to a report by Politico, Bill Gates’ opinion (and money) has so much influence on the WHO that officials privately call it “the Bill Chill.” Sixteen officials speaking on the condition of anonymity told Politico that Gates has an out-sized influence on the politics of the WHO and few dare challenge him. “He is treated liked a head of state, not only at the WHO, but also at the G20,” a Geneva-based NGO representative stated.
No matter how you approach the solutions being presented as the answer to the COVID-19 pandemic – particularly vaccines – you will find Bill Gates’ fingerprints. He has repeatedly used his money and influence to profit and steadily gain power without ever being elected to political office. In Mexico, Gates’ influence is gaining via the WHO’s COVAX Facility and his friendship with Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim.
In August, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard announced that Slim would finance production of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in partnership with Argentina to be distributed across Latin America. AstraZeneca signed an agreement with the Carlos Slim Foundation, a Mexican non-profit organization ran by Carlos Slim, to contribute to the production and distribution of the potential COVID-19 vaccine, AZD1222. If clinical trials are successful, shipments are expected to begin in the first half of 2021.
Gates and Slim’s relationship appears to go back at least a decade, with Gates writing a blog titled “Mexico, Carlos Slim, and me” back in 2013. Gates fawns over Slim, comparing him to his own mentor Warren Buffet. Gates and Slim attended a series of events in Mexico organized by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT). Gates mentioned that him and Slim were slated to tour the new CIMMYT facilities which include a “gene bank, which holds the genetic diversity of 130,000 wheat and 28,000 maize varieties worldwide.” Although Gates claims that the data would be uploaded to databases that will be available to farmers everywhere, his involvement with such projects is worrisome given his attempts to dominant the global food supply via genetically engineered seeds.
This is evidenced by a 2013 report that Gates and Slim were partnering with CIMMYT to lead the “Green Revolution” in Mexico. The Foundations funded a $25 million research facility to develop “higher-yielding, more resilient wheat and maize varieties” using “state-of-the-art- biotechnology”.
Now, the two men are continuing their partnership by speeding up the production, development, and distribution of several COVID-19 vaccines intended for the Mexican people.
Will the COVID-19 Vaccine Be Mandatory?
As Mexico approaches approval and eventual distribution of one or more COVID-19 vaccines, the conversation around how to distribute them and how much choice individuals should have is increasingly relevant.
In recent years, there has been talk of making vaccines compulsory in Mexico. Recently, there was a political initiative which called for making vaccinations an obligation for all people residing in Mexico. The so-called Alcalá initiative stated that up to 14 vaccines would be mandatory, including those for the seasonal flu, measles, and whooping cough.
In 2017, Carmen Espinoza, Research Coordinator at the General Hospital of Mexico, told the 17th Latin American Congress of Pediatric Infectology that Mexico had one of the most extensive vaccination schedules in the world. Espinoza said this was the result of vaccination cards which were implemented by the National Health System in 2015. This system divides the public up by age group and determines which vaccines are needed.
Mexico’s “Universal Immunization Program” may be expanding, especially in light of COVID-19 fears. In September, the Mexican Senate approved a proposal recognizing the “rights of girls, boys, and adolescents to receive the vaccines contained in the Universal Vaccination Program”. The proposal establishes that parents or guardians are obligated to ensure that minors receive the vaccines in the Universal Immunization Program, unless there is a certified medical exemption. The proposal also states that parents who do not comply or fail to get medical justification for not vaccinating will face legal repercussion from the attorney’s offices for the protection of children and adolescents. The measure also calls on education and school authorities to request the National Vaccination Card to verify if parents and children are complying.
Ricardo Monreal Ávila, the coordinator of the Morena Parliamentary Group and author of the initiative, specifically stated that this measure “increases the mandatory nature of vaccines for minors, especially in the current context of Covid-19.” Ávila also stated that an “anti-vaccine” movement has been growing around the world and in Mexico. The initiative is the Morena’s attempt to defeat the growing vaccine skeptics movement before it can influence Mexicans decisions regarding a COVID-19 vaccine.
The promotion of a Universal Immunization Program is also concerning in light of numerous injuries to children resulting from the implementation of a similar program in India. The Universal Immunization Program launched in India in 1985 and has now expanded to include 12 vaccines recommended for children and adolescents. The Indian government has collaborated with the WHO on the program, in some instances working directly with the Gates Foundation to distribute vaccinations. In fact, in 2017, the Indian government chose to replace the Gates Foundation as a source of funding for vaccine research due to the perception that the Foundation and other Non-Governmental Organizations were unfairly influencing government policy.
Additionally, a 2017 report notes that the Gates-funded Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, provides “catalytic support to India’s immunization program and will provide up to US$ 500 million between 2016 and 2021 to support India’s immunization program.” The report also notes that the WHO and UN are working “closely” with the Indian government to modernize vaccine services.
Whether or not the promotion of a Universal Immunization Program leads to more calls for mandatory vaccines remains to be seen. What is clear is that several of the world’s governments are indicating they will promote the use of so-called Immunity Passports, including various forms of digital phone apps or QR codes that can quickly communicate a persons vaccine status. These digital immunity passports will determine whether an individual can fly or enter certain businesses.
The UK government has already signaled that many businesses are likely to require the CommonPass, which has been developed by the World Economic Forum – again, the group behind The Great Reset. While this type of digital system might work in the US or UK, it’s difficult to imagine such a scheme working in Mexico. One major hindrance to adopting a similar immunity passport system is the lack of digital devices and service to the people in Mexico’s many rural towns and villages.
The coming weeks and months will reveal how the Mexican governments responds to those who are not interested in volunteering for vaccines. If President López Obrador’s recent statements at the G20 are any indication, the federal government is not likely to call for mandatory vaccinations, though this would not stop a state or local government from attempting to do so. At the G20 López Obrador called for governments to “abandon the temptation to impose authoritarian measures” and called on political leaders to do “nothing by force, all by persuasion and reason.”