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More pressure on Federal Govt to deliver vaccines
Published on: Thursday, July 22, 2021
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Kota Kinabalu: Pressure continued to mount on the Federal Government to ensure Sabah achieves “herd immunity” quickly so that the economy can reopen earlier.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin (pic) said based on JKJAV data, recipients for the first and second doses in the state are very low compared to the other states which is very worrying with the increase in positive Covid-19 cases in Sabah over the past few days.

He explained that various approaches have been implemented by the State Government such as the opening of more vaccine administration centres (PPV) and the Covid-19 vaccination outreach programme but it would be difficult to achieve vaccination targets if vaccine supply is insufficient.

He urged the Federal Government and the parties involved, especially JKJAV, to act immediately by sending vaccine supplies to Sabah to reduce the gap between this state and the other states.

“This cannot be delayed as we are facing a more dangerous threat following the discovery of new variants (VOC) that are highly contagious.

“Therefore, we need to immediately establish herd immunity to reduce the risk of infection,” he said.

Bung who is also Works Minister advised parties involved to implement other initiatives to further encourage registration as using MySejahtera is not effective enough.

The Lamag Assemblyman, said the “walk-in” approach should be considered for Sabahans who have registered but still have not received an appointment to receive the injection, especially in rural areas as some of them do not have internet access.

He suggested walk-in and drive-thru vaccinations so Sabah can achieve herd immunity within the targeted time.

Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah (FCAS) President Tan Sri T.C Goh expressed disappointment and grave concern over the slow progress of Sabah’s Covid-19 vaccination rate, which is currently the lowest in the country.

He was puzzled by the scenario, especially the huge disparity (in vaccination rate) between Sabah and the Federal Territory of Labuan, despite their close proximity. 

The Federal Government recently announced that Labuan had the highest vaccination rate in the country.

Goh who is also a member of Sabah Economic Advisory Council (SEAC) cum President of the Federation of Sabah and Labuan Hokkien Associations (FSLHA) noted that neighbour Sarawak had the second highest vaccination rate, after Labuan.

“It’s rather strange and unreasonable that Sabah currently has the lowest vaccination rate,” he said, adding that the Federal Government and Ministry of Health owed the people of Sabah a good explanation.

“Whatever the reason, the Federal Government must strive to rectify such a discouraging situation without further delay!” he said.

“Official statistics revealed that, as of Monday, Sabah remained the only state with less than 10pc of its population having completed two doses, which is the lowest in the country,” he said.

In other words, more than 80pc of Sabah population had yet to be vaccinated, which is obviously far lagging behind the goal of achieving herd immunity by the end of this year, as set by the Federal Government.

“This is certainly very unfair for the people of Sabah!” he said.

The Sabah United Chinese Chamber of Commerce (SUCCC) also hoped the Federal Government would speed up the supply of vaccine doses to Sabah as soon as possible.

Its President, Tan Sri Andrew Liew Sui Fatt said Sabah is now facing shortage of vaccines and lagging far behind other states.

He urged people to get inoculated so that the state could expedite the national recovery plan, besides adhering to the standard operating procedures of wearing masks and maintaining physical distancing.



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