KUCHING, April 30: Sarawak People’s Aspiration Party (Aspirasi) president Lina Soo is crying foul over the AstraZeneca vaccine “offer” to Sarawak by Covid-19 National Immunisation Programme (NIP) Minister Khairy Jamaluddin as reported in the media recently.
Hot on the heels of the discovery that eight out of 10 ventilators sent to Sarawak were second-hand and dysfunctional, Khairy has now topped it off by attempting to push the AstraZeneca vaccine to Sarawak, Soo said in a press statement today.
According to her, 18 countries have suspended the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine, the EU (European Union) is not reordering it and Denmark, Hong Kong and Norway are banning it.
“The AstraZeneca vaccine has generated a lot of controversy with 209 cases of blood clots and 41 deaths linked to the vaccine as reported by the British Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in Britain.
“With this statistic, it is foolhardy to claim that the benefits will outweigh the risks, as one death from the vaccine is one death too many,” she said.
Soo said it is reported Malaysia has placed an order for the AstraZeneca vaccine to cover 20 percent of its population of 32 million, and its first batch of 268,800 doses has been received.
“Sarawak has a small population of only 2.8 million and if six million doses of AstraZeneca were to be dumped into Sarawak, this means each Sarawakian can be vaccinated more than twice over,” she added.
On the same note, Soo applauded the Local Government and Housing Minister Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian’s decision to reject the AstraZeneca vaccine for Sarawakians on safety concerns, where Khairy had assured that the vaccine will not be offered in the National Immunisation Program (NIP), which means there will be no compulsion and acquisition will be voluntary.
“However Aspirasi’s support for Dr Sim’s stand on the AstraZeneca vaccine comes with a caveat. Should Dr Sim’s resolve give way where he fails to stand firm by his decision, and a vial of Astra-Zeneca slips through into Sarawak, the voters shall punish him and his political party dearly at the ballot box,” she said. — DayakDaily