Move to vaccinate Malaysians working in S’pore

Very soon: The Johor government is targeting at least 100,000 Malaysians working in Singapore to be registered for vaccination. — Bernama

PONTIAN: Johor will join forces with the Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry (Mosti) to create a system to register Malaysians who have jobs in Singapore to be vaccinated, says the Mentri Besar.

Datuk Hasni Mohammad said the state government was targeting at least 100,000 such Malaysians who had to return to the country due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We expect to roll out the vaccination shots for the Malaysian workers during the second phase of the National Covid-19 Immunisation programme.

“The matter was decided by Mosti recently, ” he told reporters after officiating the Johor Farmers’ Association mentor-mentee programme in Benut yesterday.

He said a system was being developed to allow these Malaysians to get registered under the special programme, adding that an estimated 400,000 Malaysians used to commute daily to their workplaces in the republic before the pandemic.

“But for the early stage, Mosti has put aside the vaccines for 100,000 of them first.

“The first phase of the Covid-19 vaccine programme is expected to end by April with the second phase starting soon after, ” he said.

Sunday Star reported that the Federal Government was expected to despatch additional Covid-19 vaccines to Johor soon to inoculate between 50,000 and 100,000 Malaysians with jobs in Singapore so that the border could reopen by May or June.

Hasni had said that the Federal Government would have to import more vaccines so that those who worked in Singapore could get vaccinated earlier, saying reopening the border with Singapore was vital to Johor’s economy.

The two land borders have been closed since March 18 last year.

Hasni had also said that the state government sent its proposal to Putrajaya to open up a third category for cross-border travel with Singapore.

The first two categories are the Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and the Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA), while the third is the Daily Commuting Arrangement (DCA).

Malaysia and Singapore started the PCA and RGL on Aug 17 last year.

Under the PCA, 2,000 Malaysians and Singaporeans with long-term work permits can cross the Causeway and the Second Link daily.

The RGL allows 400 Malaysians and Singaporeans to travel between the two countries every week for official and business matters.

Hasni had said that as long as the two countries could agree on a common SOP and vaccination certificate, it would mean that Singaporeans who had been vaccinated could cross into Johor without needing to be quarantined.

He said this also included Malaysians who had been vaccinated there who wanted to return home.

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