A Labor politician has claimed China acted rapidly to stop COVID-19

‘Chairman Dan’ Andrew’s secretary PRAISES China over its handling of the coronavirus crisis and claims Beijing slowed the spread of the virus to Australia

  • Parliamentary secretary Danny Pearson praised China’s response to COVID-19
  • Mr Pearson told Legislative Assembly in March country had acted rapidly
  • He said the response had slowed the spread of the virus to Australia
  • Comments came as questions were being raised over China’s transparency 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

The parliamentary secretary to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews praised China over its response to the coronavirus around the time questions were first being raised over the country’s transparency.   

Labor MP Danny Pearson told the Legislative Assembly in March the country had acted rapidly during the early days of the virus and slowed its spread to Australia, The Australian reported.

‘When you look at it, I think we have been fortunate in the way in which China has dealt with it and the way in which this disease has played out in terms of having these interventions to try and prevent the spread of the disease,’ he said. 

Danny Pearson (left, with former Labor leader Bill Shorten) told a Legislative Assembly in March the country had acted rapidly during the early days of the virus and slowed its spread to Australia

Danny Pearson (left, with former Labor leader Bill Shorten) told a Legislative Assembly in March the country had acted rapidly during the early days of the virus and slowed its spread to Australia

The parliamentary secretary to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (pictured) praised China over its response to the coronavirus around the time questions were first being raised over the country's transparency

The parliamentary secretary to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (pictured) praised China over its response to the coronavirus around the time questions were first being raised over the country’s transparency

‘Yes, the disease has spread, but imagine if those measures had not been put in place in a city like Wuhan and you had a pop­ulation of five million people going about their business ­without that sort of rapid state ­intervention and the imposition of martial law — which I appreciate for the ­people in the communities ­involved would be very challenging. 

‘But imagine if you had five million people who were in Wuhan for Chinese New Year and those five million people spread — they went to Beijing, they went to Shanghai, they came to Melbourne or to Sydney — and China had not responded in the way in which it has.’

Mr Pearson is the parliamentary secretary to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, who has received criticism for his defence of China and his slow approach to lifting coronavirus restrictions in Victoria.

Liberal MP Tim Smith threw around labels such as ‘friendless loser’ and ‘Chairman Dan’, after Mr Andrews refused to open pubs and licensed venues while other states like Queensland and New South Wales slowly reopened venues in May.

‘In Victoria with control freak wowsers like Dictator Dan running the show, you can’t even sit down for a coffee, let alone a beer,’ he wrote on Twitter. 

World health experts and officials began to raise questions about China’s transparency and handling of the virus in China in January.

Human Rights Watch’s China director Sophie Richardson was concerned the Chinese state could have deliberately silenced medical experts raising the alarm about the virus, and halted medical research.

An unnamed nurse wearing a protective suit uploaded a video and claimed there were as many as 90,000 people infected in China despite official government figures sitting at 1,975 at the time.

‘I’m in the area where the coronavirus started,’ she said.

‘I’m here to tell the truth. At this moment, Hubei province, including Wuhan area, even China, 90,000 people have been infected by coronavirus.’ 

Mr Pearson's comments were made after world experts and health officials began to raise questions about China's transparency and handling of the virus in January

Mr Pearson’s comments were made after world experts and health officials began to raise questions about China’s transparency and handling of the virus in January

Mr Pearson is leading negotiations with the Victorian state's involvement in China's Belts and Road Initiative (pictured, Chinese president Xi Jinping)

Mr Pearson is leading negotiations with the Victorian state’s involvement in China’s Belts and Road Initiative (pictured, Chinese president Xi Jinping)

Mr Pearson is leading negotiations with the Victorian state’s involvement in China’s Belts and Road Initiative. 

The ambitious project refers to China’s plan to expand its global trade route and create overland routes – like roads and train passages – and maritime passages in 138 different countries.

Victoria is the only government in Australia to have signed onto the controversial $1.5 trillion deal.

Premier Daniel Andrews has come under increasing pressure to scrap the deal, of which prime minister Scott Morrison has been a vocal critic. 

‘It is not a program the Australian government has signed up to,’ he said on Thursday.

‘It is not the Australian government’s foreign policy and all states and territories should not be doing things that act inconsistently with federal policy.’ 

Mr Andrews has insisted in the past the agreement was properly flagged with federal authorities. 

‘The first agreement was sent to DFAT in draft form and the second agreement is simply an extension of the first,’ he said. 

Premier Daniel Andrews has come under increasing pressure to scrap the deal, of which prime minister Scott Morrison has been a vocal critic

Premier Daniel Andrews has come under increasing pressure to scrap the deal, of which prime minister Scott Morrison has been a vocal critic

Liberal MP Tim Smith unleashed an extraordinary attack on Twitter (pictured), calling Daniel Andrews a 'control freak' and a 'friendless loser'

Liberal MP Tim Smith unleashed an extraordinary attack on Twitter (pictured), calling Daniel Andrews a ‘control freak’ and a ‘friendless loser’

‘We have a strong and good relationship with China and what that means is our exports are up 62 per cent in the last five years.’  

Daily Mail Australia contacted Mr Pearson’s office for comment. 

Advertisement