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KUALA LUMPUR, April 17 — DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang has once again urged for Parliament to be reconvened, this time to deal with a potential fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak in the country.
He said this is particularly important, as Malaysia has not been able to bring the eight-months long Covid-19 third wave under control by reducing the number of Covid-19 cases to double-digit figures as in August last year.
“We have a snail’s pace development in the national vaccination rollout, and all MPs should find ways and means to make the national Covid-19 vaccination rollout not only a success but to accelerate and complete it by Malaysia Day on September 16 so that normality and economic recovery efforts can be initiated as early as possible,” Lim said in a statement.
The Iskandar Puteri MP argued that Malaysia is not only among the worst performing nations in the first year in the pre-vaccination phase of the Covid-19 pandemic, but could possibly turn out to be among the worst performing nations in the second year of the vaccination phase of the pandemic.
“We must pull ourselves up by the bootstraps so that we could be one of the better performing nations in the war against the Covid-19 pandemic in the year of the second vaccination phase.
“The East Asia and Pacific region is one of the few global bright spots in the first year in the pre-vaccination phase in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic unlike the disastrous performance of United States and the European nations, and such a success provides many lessons on containing infectious diseases at a low cost to the economy in an era of chronic pandemics,” he said.
Lim cited the latest Bloomberg Covid Resilience Ranking monthly report dated March 25, which indicated Malaysia as trailing behind Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, China, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong and Vietnam in the war against the pandemic.
“Malaysia is the exception as we have performed dismally in the pre-vaccination phase as compared to many countries in the region. According to the Bloomberg Vaccine Tracker, more than 860 million doses have been administered across 155 countries worldwide, but in Malaysia, only 1.3 per cent of the population had been fully vaccinated.
“There is a need for a greater sense of urgency about the national vaccination rollout in Malaysia as it is a recipe for disaster to have a largely unvaccinated people in a world where Covid-19 is mutating and changing rapidly,” he said.
Yesterday saw 2,551 new infections in Malaysia, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 370,528, with 18,600 active cases and 1,365 reported deaths so far.