Anwar: Why slow vaccine delivery from 'good friend' China?
Pakatan Harapan chairperson Anwar Ibrahim questioned the slow delivery of Covid-19 vaccines manufactured in China, despite previous reports saying it would give Malaysia priority access to its vaccines.
Anwar pointed out that Malaysia had purchased 15 million doses of China-manufactured vaccines, but has only received one million thus far, which accounts for 7 percent of the government's total order.
He said other countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and Cambodia have already received 59, 48 and 32 percent, respectively, of the vaccines they purchased from China, which includes the Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccines.
“Why is the situation so bad in Malaysia?
"Why doesn't our prime minister use his position to ask our good friend China to deliver the vaccines faster? Especially when you see, the China Foreign Minister Wang Yi had given priority to Malaysia in his visit here (in October last year).
“What are the ministers doing?... This means we are not paying attention to the point that our vaccine delivery (from China) is only 7 percent compared to other countries,” Anwar said in a Facebook live stream last night.
The Port Dickson MP said it was reported previously that Malaysia and China had signed an agreement in November last year, where Malaysia would be given priority access to Covid-19 vaccines developed by China.
So far, the government has three Covid-19 vaccines in its portfolio - Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and China’s Sinovac.
Anwar also questioned why the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) has yet to approve the use of Sinopharm.
He said it was previously reported that 10,000 Sinopharm vaccine doses should arrive in Malaysia this month but the use of that vaccine has yet to be approved.
Some 42 countries have approved the use of Sinopharm including Argentina, Brunei, Cambodia and the United Arab Emirates, he added.
“We are taking such a long time (to approve the use of the Sinopharm vaccine). I see this as the failure of this government until the rakyat are negatively affected… and (this government is) so arrogant, too arrogant,” Anwar said.
The PKR president added that the government can impose as many lockdowns and movement control orders as it likes, but it will never successfully and sustainably flatten the curve until those efforts come hand in hand with a robust vaccination programme and data transparency.