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DAP SLAMS FEDERAL GOVT FOR SIDELINING SABAH IN VACCINATION PROGRAMME


Phoong Jin Zhe

7 July 2021


KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah Democratic Action Party (DAP) has criticised the federal government for disrespecting Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor by delaying the state's vaccination programme.


Sabah DAP Socialite Youth (DAPSY) chief Phoong Jin Zhe said, the state's daily vaccinated population declining since June and only 8,518 individuals vaccinated on July 5, which is a huge gap from the targeted 30,000 doses per day.


Earlier, Hajiji announced during the launching of the "Zero COVID-19" programme that the state is aiming to vaccinate 30,000 people per day starting from July.


Phoong who is also the Luyang State Assemblyman said the state has only achieved approximately 10,000 to 15,000 doses per day yet the chief minister aimed to achieve 30,000 vaccinations starting from July. "The reality now is disappointing to all concerned Sabahans," he added.


He also demanded an explanation as to why some individuals have had sudden delays in their vaccination appointment and slammed the federal government for the insufficient supplies of vaccines in Sabah.


"This Perikatan Nasional (PN) government is disrespecting the Chief Minister that comes from the same political coalition, Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) with the insufficient supply of vaccines that delays the "Zero COVID-19" programme.


"Furthermore, it has been a week since the state government submitted the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for gazetting but the federal government is not responding at all," he lamented.


Phoong also urges the state government to reconvene the State Assembly sitting as soon as possible to discuss important matters such as the supply of vaccines and the state's own recovery plan.


He explained that vaccination plays a crucial role as it affects Sabah from moving onto further phases of the National Recovery Plan (NRP).


"There are three important indicators that decide which states can enter further phases of the NRP - Daily positive cases, usage of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), and vaccination rate.


"Six states were announced to move onto the second phase but Sabah was excluded, it is mainly because Sabah's vaccination rate is as low as 5.8 per cent only.


"If according to daily positive cases, Sabah has fulfilled the indicator to move onto phase three but the vaccination rate has been our burden as we are the second-lowest nationwide."


Phoong also mentioned that the state government should combat the pandemic from its roots.


"Many business owners have been facing hardship amid this total lockdown, if the government decides to take the economic approach, it should be fair to all and other sectors should be allowed to reopen as well," he asserted.