08 December 2020

Health Secretary Matt Hancock breaks down on live TV in tears of joy over first vaccines

Health Secretary Matt Hancock was overcome with emotion during a TV interview, breaking down in tears as the first people in the UK received the Pfizer Covid-19vaccine.

Good Morning Britain presenters Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid looked on as a clearly emotional Hancock reacted to footage of 90-year-old William Shakespeare receiving the vaccine - the second person in Britain to do so.

TheHealth Secretary then composed himself before saying: "It's been such a tough year for so many people and there's William Shakespeare putting it so simply for everybody that we can get on with our lives.

"There's still a few months to go. I've still got this worry we can't blow it now, Piers. We've still got to get the vaccine to millions of people and so we've got to keep sticking by the rules.

"But there's so much work gone in to this that I'm really, really... it makes you so proud to be British."

Morgan tweeted Hancock’s reaction saying: "Amazing moment on ⁦@GMB this morning as Health Secretary ⁦@MattHancock broke down in tears after hearing a man named William Shakespeare talk about becoming the first man in the world to get the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine."

Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, who has opposed the Government over his city’s Tier 3 restrictions, was one of several people to react kindly.

He said: "Credit where it’s due. @MattHancock has clearly worked hard to get us to this point with the vaccine.Today is a day when he deserves recognition for that."

Another Twitter user echoed Burnham’s comments by adding: "Why is this so hard to understand he's so relieved? He's been through all this year the same as the rest of us. Then he's had to put up with constant abuse rightly ot wrongly. He's only a guy doing a job. I don't envy him at all."

But others were less impressed by Hancock’s tears on and chose instead to point out his shortfalls during the pandemic.

One said: "It wasn't Hancock who made this vaccine.  He doesn't deserve any credit in my eyes. The damage he alone has caused is immense. Fake tears and sneers don't cut it."

Another added: "He deserves zero congratulations, he is a bureaucracy who's mistakes led to deaths. 

"IMO we should celebrate the scientists, but only after we know the vaccine is actually making things better."

And a third said: "Worked hard? I've seen extras in adverts deliver more convincing performances than this. European scientists have worked hard. NHS staff have worked hard. The population of this country has worked hard.

"He's barely brought enough onions to draw a single crocodile tear."

Margaret Keenan, 90, became the first person in the world to receive the Pfizer vaccine when she received the injection on Tuesday morning.

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