Saturday, June 19

CM urged to protest to federal govt on delay, shortage of vaccines


See Chee How

KUCHING: Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How is urging Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg to make a written reference and protest to Putrajaya on the delay in supply and shortage of vaccines to Sarawak.

“I have to express my doubt and question the seriousness of the federal government in helping Sarawak in the implementation of the second phase of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme.

“In the meantime, the State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) must be truthful to all Sarawakians on Sarawakians’ participation in this second phase of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme, which is scheduled to commence this week, and whether the state government is still able to ensure the full vaccination of all Sarawakians by August this year,” he said in a statement yesterday.

See expressed his disappointment and disbelief that the vaccination exercise in Sibu had to be halted after only one day of vaccination because no vaccine had been supplied or delivered to Sibu yet.

He said that those who had registered for vaccination under the MySejahtera application and were given dates and time for their vaccination in this Phase 2 of the National Immunisation Programme have now been notified that they will be informed on the change of date for their appointments to be vaccinated.

He also noted also that there is similar hiccup or complication in Kuching which will kick off the vaccination programme this Friday.

“While a number of the elders are told to be present at later times, others are told that their vaccination has been rescheduled and they will be notified accordingly.

“In all probability, the delivery of the vaccine has been delayed or insufficient vaccines were delivered to the various cities and towns in Sarawak,” he said.

See pointed out that according to the daily updates of the Health Ministry and the ministers, there is a steady climb in the number of people being vaccinated every day, all in the states in West Malaysia.

“Despite the promises of the federal and state government that Sarawak will be given the priority in the vaccination exercise, we are running out of vaccine after just one day,” he said.

See said that much effort had been put in by the government, local councils, non-governmental organisations and individuals to lobby for the support and co-operation of Sarawakians to overcome the pandemic.

As such, he said the federal and state governments must show that they are really serious and are open to maintain and win the confidence of all Sarawakians to battle on with more vigour.

To ensure the success of this Phase 2 of the National Immunisation Programme and that all Sarawakians will be vaccinated by this August, he urged SDMC to reveal its existing plan with the federal government on the immunisation programme for the next three months.

“How many Sarawakians are scheduled for vaccination in the original plan of this second phase of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme that is commencing this week? How many doses of the vaccine have we received and when are the other batches of vaccine scheduled to arrive in Sarawak?

“How many vaccination centres are presently opened in Sarawak for the immunisation programme and how many more will be opened in the various divisions and districts in the next three months? What is the plan of the government to engage more doctors and nurses or to engage the private hospitals, clinics and practitioners to drive up the immunisation programme in Sarawak?” he asked.

See said that the grand plan to vaccinate all Sarawakians by this August is supported by all Sarawakians, to the extent that all quarters have expressly approved the state government to utilise the state’s reserves to procure the needed vaccine.

“It is time to pull all the acts together and make this plan work,” he said.