Speed up jabs for athletes

Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah

KUCHING: The Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) was urged to expedite the Covid-19 vaccination to Sarawak athletes.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said it is crucial that the athletes that will be representing the state in sporting events are protected.

“Without vaccination, they will be exposed to the possibility of being infected and this may cause their performance to dip.

“I hope they can be vaccinated at an early stage so that they can be involved in trainings without any interruption,” he said today (June 24).

Abdul Karim said similarly, the staff and the coaches who are managing the athletes have to be vaccinated too.

“We have written to the SDMC and if they give their approval, we can arrange for the athletes to be vaccinated at a registered venue or at the Stadium Perpaduan which is under the purview of the Youth and Sports Ministry,” he said.

He said with Sukan Malaysia (Sukma) expected to be held mid next year, the athletes could not wait for vaccinations until the end of the year.

“If possible, we want them to be vaccinated within a month time as they need to undergo training. We have our own training plan.

“The training plan will become more rigorous as the tournament date draws nearer. We don’t want this to be interrupted in the event that one or two of our athletes are infected by Covid-19,” he said.

Abdul Karim said with the vaccines, the athletes will have better immunity against Covid-19 as well as boosting their morale.

“If our suggestion is well received, of course our athletes will be happy as they anticipate the (early) vaccination,” he said.