#kerajaangagal49 – Time for a total overhaul of the strategy to fight the war against the Covid-19 pandemic as the old strategy has failed – resulting in Malaysia becoming one of the worst performing nations even worse than United States

The time has come for a total overhaul of the strategy to fight the war against the Covid-19 pandemic as the old strategy used for the past 16 months has failed resulting in Malaysia becoming one of the worst performing nations even worse than the United States.

For the past six days, Malaysia has a higher daily increase of new Covid-19 cases than Indonesia, as illustrated by the following:

Date Malaysia Indonesia
12/5 4,765 4,608
13/5 4,855 3,448
14/5 4,113 2,633
15/5 4,140 2,385
16/5 3,780 3,080
17/5 4,464 4,295

Indonesia has about nine times the population of Malaysia and during the its peak, it had daily increase of 14,518 new Covid-19 cases on January 30.

Now it has less daily increase of new Covid-19 cases, though it has a higher cumulative total of 1.74 million Covid-19 cases and 48,305 fatalities compared to Malaysia’s cumulative total of 474,556 and 1,947 fatalities.

Although Malaysian fatalities cannot compare with that of Indonesia, it is still most shocking and unacceptable that in the last six days alone, there had been 225
Covid-19 deaths. In two day’s time, Malaysia’s Covid-19 fatalities is likely to pass the 2,000-mark – raising the question whether we are getting into the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic after 16 months!

Although the United States, with 33.7 million cases is the No. 1 nation in the world with the most number of cumulative total of Covid-19 cases, it has turned a corner with the presidency of Joe Biden, as the daily increase of new Covid-19 cases has fallen from the peak of 304,212 cases on January 8, 2021 to 19,755 cases – a humongous reduction of 93.5%.

In contrast, the present surge of the third Covid-19 wave in Malaysia, one of the longest Covid-19 wave in the world, threatens to overtake the Malaysian peak recorded on January 30, which was 5,728 cases as compared to 4,464 cases yesterday.

According to Our World in Data website, the latest rolling seven-day average of confirmed Covid-19 cases per million of population, Malaysia has a higher figure than the United States and United Kingdom – Malaysia at 129.91 as compared to United States of America at 100.34 and United Kingdom at 33.69.

We are above both the world average of 86.86 and the Asian average of 88.78.

We are also the highest in East Asia, ASEAN and Pacific, as illustrated by the following data:

Country Cases per million
Malaysia 129.91
Philippines 54.72
Japan 48.56
Thailand 36.99
Cambodia 25.18
Indonesia 13.61
South Korea 12.59
Singapore 5.52
Taiwan 2.99
Vietnam 1.17
Brunei 0.65
Myanmar 0.31
Australia 0.26
New Zealand 0.21
China 0.01

We have performed way below expectation in every aspect of the Covid-19 pandemic, resulting in Malaysia having a disproportionately huge cumulative total of Covid-19 cases, a high daily increase of new Covid-19 cases and fatalities and a low rate of vaccination process.

FreeMalaysiaToday (FMT) reported yesterday that the Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s inner circle had warned him and several ministers about rising public anger, with the hope that the government would use better communication strategies to reverse the tension.

Two Bersatu party insiders told FMT said the government had failed to communicate effectively with the rakyat, relying on dry data instead of real stories of the people’s suffering from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“There were some hard truths the prime minister needed to know. We have passed the message. If they do not take heed, the government may not be able to fight the anger,” one insider said.

He said most leaders are aware that it may be too late to reverse the anger but “there’s still hope as we do not want general elections this year.”

He said several party members are unhappy with the way the government was running the country.

Another Bersatu party insider said the prime minister’s team had been told there is genuine anger about the double standards practised by the government.

He said Muhyiddin had been told that the police must question everyone, including ministers and deputy ministers, if they breach the rules.

But will Muhyiddin listen?

I had said that the Muhyiddin government is facing a national crisis and that it has no public trust and confidence to lead, handle and resolve. I said the Opposition is prepared to form a parliamentary united front with the Perikatan Nasional government in the war against Covid-19 pandemic – convene Parliament, no “no-confidence” motion and spearhead a “whole-of-society” national mobilisation of Malaysians to restore the country to normalcy.

But there had been no response from Muhyiddin government.

Meanwhile, the mishandling of the Covid-19 pandemic had continued from one disaster to another catastrophe.

Who would have expected Malaysia to cross the half-million mark for cumulative total of Covid-19 cases around May 24 and cross the 2,000 mark for Covid-19 fatalities in two days’ time?

Who would have expected that Malaysia would not be among the better performing nations in the Covid-19 pandemic in East Asia, ASEAN and Pacific like Singapore, South Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, China, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand, but viewed unfavourably even by Indonesia which associated Malaysia with India as among the worst performing nations in handling the Covid-19 pandemic?

Pakatan Harapan’s Covid-19 vaccination committee had warned that Malaysia will be trapped in a “vicious cycle of movement control order” unless the government ramped up its 3Ts (test, trace and treat) and vaccinations.

Although Malaysia had been strickened by the Covid-19 pandemic for 16 months, the authorities are responding as if they are being hit by a unknown pandemic for the first time.

The inefficient and disorganised quarantine and vaccination centres as well as government hospitals running out of beds at intensive care units (ICUs) to treat critical Covid-19 cases do not show the public health infrastructure and system of Malaysia in good light.

Malaysians are reminded of the 1,000-bed hospital in Wuhan, China that was built in 10 days at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. Malaysians must show the same can-do spirit of grit and fortitude to overcome the various deadly variants of the Covid-19 pandemic.

There must be consistency, public trust and confidence. There is, for instance, ambiguity as to whether the Federal Government is prepared to end its monopoly on vaccine procurement.

With the Sarawak government procuring a million doses of Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine, the Federal Government must make it clear that it would welcome State Governments to procure Covid-19 vaccine to provide free to the people in the State so as to accelerate the national vaccination roll-out, especially as Malaysia is in a race against time fighting the critical battle of ‘vaccine vs virus’.

Is Muhyiddin aware that his government is facing the worst crisis of confidence in Malaysian history?

(Media Statement by DAP MP for Iskandar Puteri Lim Kit Siang on Tuesday,18th May 2021)

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