Sabah CM expected to be vaccinated after launch of state-level vaccination programme

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor is expected to be vaccinated on March 4 after the state-level Covid-19 vaccination programme launch.

State Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said the first batch of the vaccines will arrive here on Thursday (Feb 25).

Hajiji will be present to witness the arrival of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA).

“I cannot confirm if he will be the first (to receive the vaccine in Sabah), but normally, the head of the government will be the first to be inoculated," said Masidi.

He was asked if Hajiji would be the first to receive the jab during the virtual press conference on Monday (Feb 22).

Masidi was also unable to provide the amount of doses arriving in the first batch, but assured that the vaccines will be sufficient for the state, according to the phases determined.

He said to date, 109 vaccine administration centres across the state have been identified to be part of the programme.

“The number of centres will be reviewed from time to time by the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force at each district level, ” he added.

When asked whether students starting schools and staying in hostels need to go through Covid-19 screening, he said those attending schools starting March 1 will not be required to take the swab tests.

He said, instead, they will go through risk assessment before entering schools.

On quarters suggesting teachers and students to be vaccinated during the first phase, Masidi said the Sabah government would consider vaccinating teachers with health comorbidities in line with the federal announcement on Feb 21.

Frontliners and essential workers will be vaccinated under the first phase.

Sabah recorded 110 new cases on Monday with one fatality recorded in Kota Kinabalu.

Masidi said the return of three-digit daily figures was due to the existing cluster (Ladang Sungai Pin), which is still active in Kinabatangan.

He, however, noted that the state capital recorded single-digit today, registering nine new cases, which he deemed as significant improvement.

“Eight districts did not record new cases (zero cases) within the 24 hours, and today, half of the number of districts in Sabah are no longer in the red zone status, even though we have no green zone yet, ” he added.

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