National Cancer Institute nurse Emilia Sinda anak Dunstan Mandau (rear, left) among other staff awaiting their turn to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Khairy Jamaluddin, the minister coordinating the Covid-19 immunisation programme, has vowed to investigate claims that certain groups of people have “cut queues” to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

He said the matter of “queue jumpers” was a serious one and this had been notified to health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

“Whistleblower can drop me an email, anonymously, at [email protected],” he said, in response to a posting on Twitter by Selayang Hospital nephrologist Dr Rafidah Abdullah.

Rafidah had said that certain people were able to skip the queues to be vaccinated. She said the ministry should consider an independent channel for the public to lodge complaints.

Khairy also said that his team had been monitoring whistleblowers’ comments on social media about vaccine queue jumping.

He said these comments were shared immediately with fellow task force member Dr Chong Chee Kheong, the health ministry’s deputy director-general. “We take every exposé seriously. Vaccine equity is important,” he said.

The minister also said some “VVIPs”, who are not elected state or federal representatives, had wanted to be included in the first phase of the national immunisation programme.

“For the wakil rakyats, I urged them to take the vaccine in stages. Some states gave their exco (executive councils) in one shot. Not good,” Khairy said in a subsequent tweet.

In the first phase of the immunisation programme, frontliners such as healthcare workers, prison officers, policemen, firemen, Rela personnel, members of the armed forces and Welfare Department workers are to be vaccinated with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Elected representatives are included as well, with Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin being the first to be vaccinated.

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Khairy has stated that he has volunteered not to be among those receiving the Pfizer vaccine, and instead would receive the next vaccine to be approved by Malaysian authorities.

The second phase of immunisation will start in April for senior citizens and high-risk groups while the third phase of immunisation will cover those above 18 years old.




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