KUCHING, June 4: Pending assemblywoman Violet Yong has urged the Sarawak government under Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) to explain the reasons for the sudden change of plan to rely solely on the Federal government for the supply of vaccines to Sarawak.
Yong in a press statement today said that since February this year, the state has been initiating and applying for approval from the Federal government to purchase its own Covid-19 vaccines for the use of Sarawakians.
According to her, the approval was subsequently granted in April to allow Sarawak to secure its own supply of vaccines through the State Covid-19 Advisory Group (SCOVAG).
“Even the Chief Minister had announced before in May that the Prime Minister has given the approval and Sarawak will purchase a total of one million doses of Sinovac vaccines through two phases,” she said.
However, Yong noted that things have “changed overnight” and that on one hand, the Sarawak government has claimed that the State will need to purchase its own vaccines to speed up the vaccination programme but on the other hand, the State government has suddenly abandoned the option to purchase the vaccines directly from the source and turned back to the Federal government for the sole supply of vaccines to Sarawak after Khairy Jamaluddin’s visit last week.
She said it cannot be denied that whatever had been said and done in the past few months on the direct purchase of vaccines has ended up as “empty talk”.
She pointed out that such a “flip-flop decision” has angered many Sarawakians, and that there are insufficient vaccines available for them to get even though due registration has been done through the MySejahtera app many months ago.
“We demand the State government to explain what has happened to the earlier purchase of the one million doses of Sinovac vaccines.
“Are these Sinovac vaccines still available to Sarawakians? What made the Sarawak hovernment agree and change its mind suddenly to let the Federal government take over the whole supply chain of vaccines to Sarawak, knowing very well that it is being administered at a snails pace? What is the deal that has been reached between the Federal government and Sarawak government for the supply of vaccines to Sarawak?” she questioned.
She added that the government must bear in mind that the sooner the vaccines are obtained, the earlier Sarawak can achieve herd immunity to break the Covid 19 chain of infection chain. — DayakDaily