KUCHING: Francis Hii Lu Sheng couldn’t have asked for a more fitting birthday present today (June 7).
He turned 60, and was happy to be able to receive his first dose of the AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine.
Hii was among the 1,000 people, mostly aged 60 and above, to receive the jab during day one of the opt-in AZ vaccination programme at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here.
“Actually, initially only my wife registered for the programme, but the person-in-charge called me and asked if I would want to take the vaccine too, and I was more than happy to take it.
“That is why, I am so happy that my wife and I finally got to be vaccinated as it is important to keep ourselves protected from the deadly virus,” he said.
Hii said he did not feel any pain or side effects after the vaccine was administered, but just experienced a “slight pinch” when injected.
“Overall, everything is alright and the whole process is very fast which took me less than an hour for the vaccination.
“Unlike at the vaccination distribution centre at the State Indoor Stadium, there are many people and it took my father nearly two hours before he received the jab,” he said.
He also expressed his appreciation to the frontliners and volunteers who ensured the vaccination process was carried out safely and smoothly.
Meanwhile, Veena Sidhu, 64, who was excited to receive the vaccine, said that she didn’t mind which type of vaccine to take, so as long it was certified safe.
“Everybody is taking it (AZ vaccine), it is safe and it should not be a problem,” she said.
Veena, who was accompanied by her son Sam Singh, said that she was also satisfied with the vaccination procedure at BCCK.
“Excellent. The state government and those involved have done a good job,” she said.
For Dayang Khamsiah Awang Omar, 62, she was a little nervous.
“I had a mixed feelings, but I tried to set a positive mind to take the vaccine; after all it is to protect myself and my family,” she said.
She said when the booking for the AZ vaccine was open last month, she managed to get the slot today (June 7) with the help of her daughter.
Last month, Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said that following the willingness of the people to take the AZ vaccine, the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force Sarawak (CITF Sarawak) agreed to let the vaccine be used in Sarawak on a voluntary, first-come first-served basis – by appointment.