Speaking at her daily COVID-19 briefing, Ms Sturgeon said she had been briefed by Chancellor Michael Gove to keep jab supplies secret during a call last week. It came after the Health Service Journal reported that NHS England’s chief executive Sir Simon Stevens told NHS leaders that “politicians were keeping away from the rooftops on numbers” of vaccines.
Scotland’s First Minister said the need to keep data secret had been discussed with all leaders of the four nations.
During the briefing, Ms Sturgeon said: “The issue about being a little bit circumspect, if I can use that language, about overall supplies of the vaccine in the UK to try to avoid pressures on the supply chain that might come from other parts of the world was mentioned in a four nations call last week which Michael Gove chaired as an issue that we had to be aware of.
“I think it is important that we are as transparent as possible but equally of course it’s just a statement of the fact that we are in a global supply chain for vaccines and therefore those who are doing the procurement will perhaps want to bear that in mind.”
She then went on to claim that Scotland had been “transparent” about supplies.
Ms Sturgeon said: “We in Scotland, and I think this will be the case across the UK, will be as transparent as we can be about supplies coming in and of course what is most important overall which is the vaccine being administered which we’re now reporting on a daily basis.”
But last week on Friday, Ms Sturgeon was asked whether supply data on the number of vaccines administered at each centre would be published.
She replied saying “judgements” had been made by the SNP Government that publishing the data would add workload to Public Health Scotland and NHS Scotland staff.
Last week Ms Sturgeon also claimed the suggestions that she was reluctant to release vaccine supply data was “pejorative language”.
READ MORE: Scotland set for strict TWO-MONTH lockdown until March
In a tweet, Mr Carlaw said: “The desperation from the SNP is palpable. They know Sturgeon lied.
“They know they’ve overplayed their hand on Brexit. They know Swinney is all over the place on education.
“They know vaccine roll out is too slow. We’ve got them on the ropes. No let up from now till election.”
It came after Scotland’s Deputy First Minister John Swinney claimed that independence is an “essential priority” for Scotland’s recovery from the coronavirus.
Last week, former MP and critic of the SNP, George Galloway branded the coronavirus vaccine situation in Scotland as “farcical”.
Taking to Twitter, Mr Galloway wrote: “The situation is perfectly absurd.
“A British vaccine paid for with British money distributed by the British Army maladministered by a devolved administration syphoning resources to bring about the break-up of Britain. Farcical.”
The First Minister has faced mounting pressure following claims the SNP Government’s coronavirus vaccine timetable has been delayed.
Ms Sturgeon said she is aiming for everyone over 50 and younger people with underlying health conditions in the devolved nation to receive their first dose by early May.
However, the First Minister’s rivals called her out on an apparent contradiction as the SNP’s health secretary said Scotland’s entire adult population would be vaccinated “by spring”.