The seemingly interminable wait for precious COVID-19 shots has certainly caused frustration for millions of North American citizens.
It’s enough to drive someone to Dubai.
The exec who takes care of a fund for 20 million Canadians did just that – against the advice of his country’s coronavirus guidelines – and paid a steep price: his job.
Mark Machin, head of Canada Pension Plan investments, resigned after his trip to the United Arab Emirates was revealed to have included his vaccination against COVID-19.
Machin sent a note to his staff Thursday outing himself – admitting he took a COVID-19 shot on a “very personal” trip to Dubai.
The Canadian Press reported Machin is still in Dubai with his partner “for many reasons, some of which are deeply personal.”
And one reason is to await the second of the two-dose Pfizer vaccine, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Machin told staff he followed all travel protocols related to his role as head of the pension fund while on the trip.
Several politicians and health-care officials have become high profile flashpoints in recent months for leaving the country despite public health advice to the contrary.
The controversy spotlights the frustration many feel about the slow vaccine rollout.
Katherine Cuplinskas, spokeswoman for Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, said via email that while CPPIB is an independent organization, “The federal government has been clear with Canadians that now is not the time to travel abroad.
“We were not made aware of this travel and further questions should be directed to the CPPIB on this matter.”
CPP Investments, which said Friday it has no further comment, had $475.7 billion in assets under management as of Dec. 31 and invests money on behalf of retired and active employees under the pension plan.