Safer to vote than to dine-in, says Dr Annuar

Dr Annuar gives an update on the Covid-19 situation in Sibu.

SIBU, Nov 6: Voting during the coming state election is safer than dining-in at an eatery.

According to Sibu Division Disaster Management Committee coordinator Dr Annuar Rapaee, this is because of the strict SOP (standard operating procedures) being enforced at all polling stations.

“At the polling station, only one person is allowed to enter the lane at a time. There is also physical distancing of at least one metre between voters.

“Voters will only have to pull their face mask to one side of their face for a short while for identification purposes,” he said.

He said this is a stark contrast to dining-in at eateries where people remove their masks to eat and drink, where the risk is higher if the place is packed with people.

“It is more dangerous to be at a coffee shop than voting during the election,” he said in reply to a viewer who asked whether it would be safe to vote during the election.

The Nangka incumbent said the relevant authorities such as the Health Ministry and the Election Commission will decide on the SOP for the state election.

Touching on the booster dose, he said those who meet the criteria can go to Sibu Indoor Stadium to receive it.

“The booster dose (currently) is eligible to those above 60 years old, frontliners and individuals with comorbidities. Sinovac recipients would be given a Pfizer booster shot three months after their second dose, while Pfizer recipients would be given the booster shot six months after their second dose.”

He said the public can check their vaccination appointment through the MySejahtera app. However those who meet all the criteria but did not receive the appointment through MySejahtera can also walk in to the stadium for the booster shot.

Dr Annuar also quoted a report done by Hong Kong researchers which said that Sinovac recipients with low antibody levels would have significantly higher immunity if they choose the BioNTech (Pfizer) vaccine.

On the Pfizer antiviral drug Paxlovid which is reported be 89 per cent effective, he hoped that the government would approve it as soon as possible.

On the Covid-19 situation in Sibu, he said the number of cases are on the downward trend as majority of the residents have been inoculated.

There were 914 cases from Oct 10-16; 632 cases from Oct 17-23; 511 cases from Oct 24-30; and 355 cases from Oct 31 to Nov 6. — DayakDaily