Republican lawmakers have labeled as “absolutely reckless” a decision to grant a further $2.3 Million to the very same outfit at the centre of the likely coronavirus lab leak that led directly to a the global pandemic.
As reported by The Daily Mail, The Biden Administration, via the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has renewed the taxpayer grant to EcoHealth Alliance to research bat coronaviruses over the next four years, with the proviso that no gain of function activity is carried out.
The funding was previously blocked when it emerged that zoologist Peter Daszak had enabled the funnelling of the money to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, where the research into making the virus more deadly was carried out.
Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Va., who sits on the House Energy and Commerce Committee said “It’s absolutely reckless that the NIH has renewed a grant for EcoHealth Alliance given their negligence and the breach of their contract with the NIH on the coronavirus research done at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”
Griffith added that EcoHealth has “not been contrite” about the Wuhan lab connection and has actively refused to cooperate with Congressional investigations.
“Until they can demonstrate a willingness to work with Congress to resolve outstanding questions and fulfill all of the terms of their federal contracts, paid for with American taxpayer dollars, all funding should remain suspended, and no new contracts should be awarded,” Griffith urged.
GOP Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa added that the renewal of the NIH grant “doesn’t pass the COVID smell test,” further noting that “Ecohealth has already betrayed the trust of American taxpayers by funneling funds to China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology for risky experiments on bat coronaviruses that may have unleashed the COVID-19 pandemic on the world.”
“Americans deserve accountability, which is why it’s past time to defund EcoHealth,” she added.
Kentucky Congressman James Comer asserted that “It’s bat crazy that the U.S. National Institutes of Health is resuming a suspended grant and allowing EcoHealth Alliance access to taxpayer dollars to conduct research on bat coronaviruses,” adding that the outfit “funneled taxpayer dollars to the Wuhan lab to conduct mad scientist research on bat coronaviruses that may have started the pandemic.”
“EcoHealth shouldn’t receive another dime from the U.S. government until we fully investigate what happened at the Wuhan lab,” Comer emphasised.
Last month, during a House hearing on the origins of the COVID Pandemic, former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe declared that “a lab leak is the only explanation credibly supported by our intelligence, by science and by common sense.”
A Senate report also concluded that the pandemic most likely came from a lab leak and was the result of a “research-related incident” in Wuhan.
The 300-page document notes that the theory that COVID-19 jumped from animals to humans in a market “no longer deserves the benefit of the doubt, or the presumption of accuracy.”
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