Umno president Zahid raps government over ‘unacceptable’ slow vaccine rollout

Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi arrives at the Court of Appeal, Putrajaya on April 5, 2021. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi arrives at the Court of Appeal, Putrajaya on April 5, 2021. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

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KUALA LUMPUR, April 22 — Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has lambasted the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government for what he claims is an “unacceptable” slow vaccine rollout to the rakyat.

In a Facebook post today, referencing the fact that only about 500,000 people in Malaysia have received both their vaccine shots, Zahid urged the government to speed up its implementation of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP), reminding it not to act solely in the interest of politics.

“The delay in the vaccination rollout is unacceptable. It needs to be expedited and the vaccination process in Malaysia is slower compared to other countries.  

“This is deeply regrettable. I hope the government acts swiftly when it comes to public health. Don’t just act swiftly when it comes to political matters, for example J-Kom,” said Zahid, in a jab at the Community Communications Department, formerly known as the Special Affairs Department.

Zahid also claimed that certain ministries had “delayed” attempts by other entities to purchase vaccines of their own volition.

“Rumour has it that other entities tried to bring in supplies of vaccines approved by the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA), but these efforts stalled because they were delayed by the relevant ministries. For example, private companies and foundations in Selangor and Sarawak.

“In fact, some rakyat are willing to use their own money to get vaccinated. If they wait for the government, it might take ages. Whatever it is, I pray that the vaccination process goes smoothly and the rakyat remain safe and well,” he said.  

On April 20, NIP coordinating minister, Khairy Jamaluddin, said at least 95 per cent of the total 571,000 frontline workers have received their first vaccine doses under phase one of the programme.

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