Up to FSJA to select media reps to be immunised first

Chin Zin Hing

KUCHING: The list of 13 media representatives to get the Covid-19 vaccine under the first phase of the vaccination programme today, was submitted by the Federation of Sarawak Journalists Associations (FSJA).

Sarawak medical director Dr Chin Zin Hing said the Health Department had no part in the selection as it was only concerned with the planning and execution of the immunisation programme.

“We only liaise with FSJA but who should be included in the list was entirely up to them,” he told reporters here today.

Earlier, Dr Chin along with Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg and two other Cabinet ministers received their vaccine shots at the Petra Jaya Medical Clinic here.

Dr Chin said FSJA should know better who among its over 500 members ought to be vaccinated first.

Media members had questioned FSJA’s selection of the 13 names to be included under the first phase of the programme as young office-bearers have been given priority while journalists who are above 60 and with chronic diseases were not considered.

Dr Chin said the state government has acknowledged that media personnel would be among the 97,161 frontliners in Sarawak to receive the vaccination under the first phase, which would run until April this year, before commencing with the second and third phases of the programme.

However, FSJA in a news report yesterday said media members who have received the vaccine would be included later under the second phase for individuals aged 60 and above and those with comorbid diseases, as well as the third phase, for individuals aged between 18 and 60 years old with no chronic illness.

Sarawak received the first shipment of 23,400 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine last Wednesday with six more shipments expected to arrive within next month. — BERNAMA