Minister offers to be the first to be vaccinated

Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah. Photo: Mohd Alif Noni

KUCHING: Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah has expressed interest in becoming the first individual to receive the upcoming Covid-19 vaccine in Sarawak.

He said this when commenting on the proposal by some parties for politicians and elected representatives to be the first to receive the jab.

“I am interested and willing to be the first person in the state to receive the vaccine when vaccination starts later.

“It can be said that it is a good proposal to give vaccines to elected representatives first because they also often go down to the field to meet the public,” he said.

He said this during a press conference after officiating at the 2021 Caring Youth Programme at Ruang Galeri, Baitul Makmur 2 Complex, here today.

Abdul Karim, who is also Youth and Sports Minister, said apart from frontline workers such as health staff, police personnel and teachers can also be among those to receive the first batch of vaccines.

However, he said he hoped that the opposition would not politicise the matter and distort facts should elected representatives become the first to receive the vaccine.

Previously, Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian said the first batch of vaccines will be arriving in the state in the last week of February.

The first phase is 87,000 doses which will be shipped within a five-week period beginning the end of February for frontline workers in the state.

The second phase which is approximately 900,000 doses will be given to high risk individuals with old age, diabetes, and high cholesterol among other comorbidities.

The third phase is also 900,000 doses and will be given to low-risk individuals who are 18 and above, Dr Sim revealed.