KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 28): A total of 9.6 million people or 30% of Malaysia’s population are expected to be vaccinated against Covid-19 next year, said Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today.

The prime minister said the government had signed two agreements for the procurement of Covid-19 vaccines.

Yesterday, he announced that the government had inked a preliminary purchase agreement with pharmaceutical company Pfizer to get a supply of 12.8 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines to meet immunisation needs of 20% or 6.4 million of the Malaysian population.

‘’Apart from the agreement with Pfizer, the government also signed an agreement with the COVAX facility to get Covid-19 vaccines to meet immunisation needs of [another] 10% of the Malaysian people.

“Insya-Allah (God willing), we will receive the vaccine supply in stages beginning from the first quarter of next year,” he said in his policy speech at Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s (Bersatu) annual general assembly held virtually today.

Muhyiddin, who is Bersatu’s president, said he is confident that with access to the vaccines and continued efforts to break the chain of Covid-19 infection, the country could bring the disease under complete control, and help revive the economy and improve the people’s well-being.

Muhyiddin also stressed the importance of collaborative efforts involving countries in the region to fight Covid-19 and revive the economy, as well as ensuring equitable access to a vaccine.

‘No necessity to force a general election until pandemic has ended’

On another matter, the prime minister hopes that Budget 2021, passed at the policy stage on Thursday, would be passed by Dewan Rakyat and subsequently Dewan Negara to ensure that the target of extending aid to the affected groups could be achieved.

“Some people feel that Budget 2021 should be rejected to force a general election. There is no necessity to do this.

“If you ask me, even yesterday (sic) I might have advised Yang di-Pertuan Agong [Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah] to dissolve Parliament for the general election to be held. But we all know the problem is Covid-19,” he added.

He said the government would return the mandate to the people to elect a new government through the general election when the Covid-19 pandemic has ended.

“Insya-Allah, if permitted by Allah, when the Covid-19 pandemic ends, we will have the general election,” he added.

Bersatu’s annual general assembly kicked off today with meetings of the Srikandi and Armada wings in the morning, with the one-day assembly conducted virtually from several locations, with strict adherence to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Source: https://www.theedgemarkets.com/article/covid19-30-malaysians-expected-be-vaccinated-next-year