Jabs for port, cargo workers

PETALING JAYA: Port and cargo workers will start getting their Covid-19 vaccine jabs today as the government extends vaccination to other sectors, said Khairy Jamaluddin (pic), who also revealed that the Prime Minister is slated to announce another economic aid package.

“We have received numerous applications to extend vaccination to other frontliners and will begin with the transport sector.

“I will be with Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong in Port Klang to begin the vaccination of port workers and cargo operators,” the Science, Technology and Innovation Minister said during an engagement session at the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia’s 45th annual general meeting, which was conducted virtually yesterday.

Khairy, who is also the coordinating minister for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme, said plans were also underway to start the vaccination of courier and e-hailing delivery riders.

“GrabFood, Foodpanda and other e-hailing riders will begin vaccination in July,” he added.

He also said another economic aid package would be announced soon by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

It will be the eighth one presented by the government since the start of the pandemic last year.

Meanwhile, Khairy said a Covid-19 vaccination “countdown” would be launched soon to galvanise the nation towards achieving the 80% target.

“We will be launching in July or August to start the countdown towards the 80% target and get people to rally behind the vaccination programme,” he added.

The countdown, he said, was crucial to prevent the vaccination momentum from waning.

“We have noticed that in other countries, vaccinations have reached a plateau with fewer people getting vaccinated,” he said.Khairy noted that the countdown would also help foster unity among Malaysians to work together to achieve the target.

He said so far, 14.7 million people had registered for vaccination, with some 15% having received their first dose and 5.5% having had both doses.

“We expect to see 10% of the people getting their full two doses by mid-July, which is in line with the threshold of moving from Phase 1 to Phase 2 under the National Recovery Plan,” he added.

Although the 10% vaccination target was within reach, Khairy said moving on to Phase 2 would depend on whether the daily number of Covid-19 cases dipped below 4,000 for seven consecutive days.

On the effort to allow vaccination to be done privately, he said a government-linked company had begun talks with Chinese companies to provide supply to those willing to pay to get vaccinated sooner.

On the opening of borders, Khairy said there were plans to open Langkawi to tourists under a pilot programme, similar to that for destinations such as Phuket and Bali.

“We are trying to open pockets of tourism bubbles where only those who are vaccinated can fly in but remain in Langkawi to do whatever they want,” he said.

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