Rabies outbreak: CM urged to reveal how Putrajaya failed the state

Dr Kelvin Yii

KUCHING, August 24: Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii wants Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg to clarify his statement yesterday blaming Putrajaya for causing the rabies outbreak in Sarawak to spread further.

In a statement today, Dr Yii asked which aspects of the Federal Government’s action were “delayed” and if those alleged delay decisions involved the availability of vaccines, whether it is human vaccines or for animals.

“Abang Johari’s statement can be perceived as an admission that maybe the quantity of vaccines may not be enough; thus, the state government needs to step in to purchase it with their own resources.

“This is also contrary to all the reports released to public that vaccines for both human and animals are sufficient. Even when we constantly question the state government on the matter, we were always informed that it is sufficient and matters are in control,” said Dr Yii.

He was told that when the state Pakatan Harapan (PH) did a follow-up recently, the amount of vaccines were sufficient as the federal veterinary had approved the state’s request. The Federal Government was also informed the Heath Department had sufficient stock.

This, he added, begged the question if the people had been mislead by the chief minister’s statement.

“That is why it is important to clarify the statements and identify the issues that are being faced before trying to point fingers at Putrajaya in an attempt to deflect from their own inefficiency, as the matter is technically under the jurisdiction of the state government,” said Dr Yii.

He said when he brought up the Emergency Motion in parliament on this matter, the minister reaffirmed the state’s responsibility on the matter as it is listed in Schedule 9 under the Concurrent List of the Federal Constitution.

“I regret that this matter was somewhat used by the state government to point fingers rather than taking the necessary responsibilities on help curb the outbreak. I also want to encourage the public to play their part in helping curb the spread, including vaccinating pets and keeping them indoors, especially in outbreak areas,” he continued. — DayakDaily