Heads of Governments
The World Health Organization Member States,
We, the undersigned 27 organizations, representing hundreds of millions of taxpayers and consumers from 16 countries, call on all national governments to hold hearings and conduct a full independent investigation on the failures of the taxpayer-funded World Health Organization (WHO) in addressing the rise of COVID-19. As a part of this investigation, governments worldwide must fully examine the WHO’s relationship with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the deaths that could have been prevented had the outbreak not been mismanaged. We further call on officials to prioritize working with private companies and industry which have proven themselves willing and able to step up to fight this pandemic, as opposed to funding a failed, corrupt bureaucracy.
When the COVID-19 outbreak began in China, the CCP responded by attempting to cover up the crisis and silence doctors, journalists, and whistleblowers who tried to warn the public. One of the first people to warn the world was the late Chinese ophthalmologist Li Wenliang who told his medical colleagues in December about cases that seemed suspiciously similar to the 2002 SARS outbreak. Chinese security police promptly put Dr. Li and 7 other medical professionals under investigation for “spreading rumors,” and retaliatory actions escalated from there. Less than a week after warning his fellow doctors about COVID-19, the leader of this alleged “conspiracy” was hauled before the security police and accused of “making false comments” that had “severely disturbed the social order.” Meanwhile authorities swiftly censored all information about the Coronavirus outbreak on social media and suppressed all news stories that exposed the dire circumstances in the city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak.
Despite the ongoing cover-up and warning signs from the international community, the WHO praised the CCP for its “transparency” and “leadership.” Under pressure from the CCP the WHO first denied that human-to-human transmission of the virus was possible, then refused to declare a public health emergency in mid-January, saying it “might spook the world further.” The WHO also delayed sending an advance party into China until February 10, and attacked proposals to institute travel bans as racist. In fact, the Director-General of the WHO went so far as to personally commend Xi Jinping’s “political commitment” and “political leadership” in dealing with coronavirus cases. Meanwhile, senior officials gushed with praise noting that the “Chinese people feel protected.”
There can be no question that the WHO’s actions resulted in the spread of the virus. Had the WHO been truthful with the world, measures would have been put in place to stem the tide of the pandemic, with critical supply manufacture, widespread testing and research having commenced significantly earlier and saved countless lives. The WHO’s failures cost the world desperately needed weeks that could have been spent preparing and mitigating the substantial loss of life.
Moreover, China worked “tirelessly behind the scenes” in lobbying to ensure the election of Dr. Tedros who previously served in the government of the Marxist and violently repressive Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front. This gruesome movement was responsible for gross human right abuses, such as torture, repression, and electoral fraud. During his tenure as health minister, Dr. Tedros was most known to have covered up three cholera outbreaks.
Additionally, the WHO’s continued refusal to recognize Taiwan due to CCP pressure not only hurts the Taiwanese but also prevents the world from learning from their successes. This farcical position was best exposed when WHO Official Bruce Aylward, frequently cited in Chinese State Media Propaganda, shamefully refused to answer questions about Taiwan in a call with a reporter. It is also telling that Dr. Tedros’ first press statement after his election as Director-General was to say the WHO would never recognize Taiwan.
This is simply part of a long pattern of failure by the WHO of putting political considerations above human lives. When the Ebola outbreak occurred in West Africa, leaked emails revealed that WHO leadership refused to classify it a public health emergency for months for political reasons as it may “anger” the leaders of African countries involved by harming tourism, despite senior directors being aware of the gravity of the situation. By the time the WHO took action, nearly 1,000 people were already dead. Overall, more than 10,000 are thought to have died in the year since the outbreak was announced.
In addition to demonstrating how the WHO places political considerations above people’s lives, WHO leadership exudes a culture of luxury travel and wasteful spending. Dr. Aylward, the WHO official who refuses to talk about Taiwan spent more than $400,000 in travel during his tenure mismanaging the Ebola outbreak as he demanded private helicopters and refused to travel by jeep on “muddy roads” at a time when doctors working on the ground “couldn’t even afford basics like protective boots, gloves and soap.” The WHO spends $200 million a year on travel — far more than what it spends on fighting Hepatitis, AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined, with first class travel and $1,000 a night hotel rooms. In fact, the WHO spends $28,500 per employee per year on travel. In contrast, Doctors Without Borders spends just $1,162 per employee per year.
Other structural flaws within the WHO are actively undermining their COVID-19 response. The radically anti-business “Framework For Engagement With Non-State Actors” discourages partnering with private sector companies and organizations with numerous items on meeting agendas attacking free enterprise as a problem and discouraging attempts to partner with productive businesses. This is the exact opposite of the approach the international community should be taking. Similarly, the WHO’s attacks on intellectual property rights is downright detrimental to the race to develop a vaccine and cure for the virus.
The CCP has boasted of its WHO takeover. In 2017, the CCP it signed an agreement with the WHO for its “One Belt, One Road” initiative, co-chaired the China-Africa Health Ministers Conference, and hosted the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation during which the CCP pledged $8.8 billion to developing countries “to improve people’s well-being worldwide.”
It is vital to learn from the mistakes of the past and ensure that a tragedy such as this never occurs again. Independent inquiries, simultaneously occurring across the globe, would uncover the full extent of the corrupt relationship between the WHO and the CCP and have the ability to examine the history of WHO failures, and ensure our tax dollars be put to the best use possible. In the meantime, we call on all governments to work with the private sector and cease funding bureaucrats with a proven track-record of failure.
Thank you and we strongly urge you to support this inquiry.
Taxpayers Protection Alliance
Fundacion Eleutera Honduras
Presidenta / Chair
Fundación para el Avance de la Libertad
Americans For Tax Reform
The Heartland Institute
Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance
Mario H. Lopez
Hispanic Leadership Fund
President and CEO
Canadian Taxpayers Federation
Carrie L. Lukas
Independent Women’s Forum
Rocio Guijarro Saucedo
Heather R. Higgins
Independent Women’s Voice
Dan Mitchell, Chairman
Brian Garst, Vice President
Center for Freedom and Prosperity
Jose Luis Tapia
Instituto de Libre Empresa
Center for Individual Freedom
Pietro Paganini, President
Competere Policies for SustainableDevelopment
Phill Tsingos, President
Nurses’ Professional Association of Queensland
Fred Cyrus Roeder
Consumer Choice Center
Property Rights Alliance
Gary L. Kavanagh
Edmund Burke Institute
Jack McGuire, State Secretary
Teachers’ Professional Association of Queensland
Vice President of Legislative Affairs
Chair and President
World Taxpayers Associations
Frontiers of Freedom
James L. Martin, Founder/Chairman
Saulius “Saul” Anuzis, President
60 Plus Association
Federico N. Fernández
Fundación Internacional Bases