By John Isaac
THE first batch of the Pfizer-Biontech Covid-19 vaccine will arrive in the country on Feb 21, said Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
“The rollout of the programme will begin on Feb 26, ” he said during the launch the guidebook for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Plan on Tuesday (Feb 16).
Muhyiddin said he would be the first person in the country to receive the vaccine to boost public confidence over its safety.
Muhyiddin also launched the www.VaksinCovid.gov.my website on Tuesday, and said that the immunisation book will be available on the website.
He added that the vaccine is important, not only to protect ourselves but also our loved ones – family members, colleagues, neighbours, and the community.
“This is the meaning of the slogan of the immunisation programme – protect yourself, protect all,” he said as reported by The Star.
He said the positive impact would be felt when everyone was protected and the immunisation programme was rolled out.
“The economic sectors will be able to open, such as tourism. We can visit one another and get back to sports, although with a new normal. This is what I mean when I say that the vaccine is our main ray of hope in ensuring victory in the war against Covid-19,” said Muhyiddin
However, he said that we should not take it easy and he urged everyone to register for the vaccine when the time came.
“Remind your family and friends to get themselves vaccinated. Make sure that we are present at the set time for the first and second dose because when we are protected, we can protect others, especially our loved ones,” he said.
On Jan 18, Muhyiddin said that almost 27 million or over 80% of Malaysia’s population are expected to be vaccinated against Covid-19 by the first quarter of 2022.
He said the first batch of vaccines was expected to be received by the end of this February, with the group to be vaccinated by early March, and the vaccination programme implemented in phases over a period of 12 months.
“The country’s vaccination programme is on track and the government has signed three agreements with vaccine producers.
“Through the established special committee on ensuring access to Covid-19 vaccine supply, the government will ensure transparency in the procurement of vaccines and give utmost priority to the National Immunisation Programme.
“A total of RM3bil has been allocated specifically for this purpose. The guidelines and methods on receiving the vaccine will be announced soon.”
He said the special Muzakarah Committee of the National Council for Malaysian Islamic Affairs has decreed that the Covid-19 vaccine is allowed and a necessity for specific groups.
“Ensuring the welfare of the community by protecting people from being infected by dangerous diseases is not something new from the Syarak (Islamic) perspective, ” he added.