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Malaysia should refrain involvement in superpower struggles – Analysts

malaysia-should-refrain-involvement-in-superpower-struggles-–-analysts

KUALA LUMPUR — Malaysia must not allow itself to get involve in the ongoing power struggles among major powers. Instead it should focus on handling Covid-19 pandemic whereby cases in the country are on the increase, according to political analysts.

Senior Fellow, Singapore Institute of International Affairs, Dr Oh Ei Sun pointed: “China is a rising power which would like to assume a more important international status, while the US would like to maintain its long-standing leading position in the world.”

Dr Oh was asked to share his views on the recent foreign media reports quoting the head of the World Health Organisation (WHO) as saying that investigations into the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic in China were being hampered by the lack of raw data on the first days of spread there.

The report quoted WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urging China to be transparent, open and to cooperate.

WHO wants to launch a second investigation into the origins of Covid in China, including audits of Wuhan laboratories.

Dr Oh said: “I think this (the report) is part and parcel of the ongoing power struggles among major powers, and is way above Malaysia’s league.

“So Malaysia should just focus on handling its pandemic well, especially in accelerating the vaccination program, not the least by getting as much vaccine as possible from whichever legitimate source,” he said in a whatsapp interview.

When asked on the government’s move to allow senior citizens aged 60 and above who have not received an appointment date to walk in to any vaccination centre (PPV) in the Klang Valley for their Covid-19 jabs, Dr Oh said: “Walk-ins should have been done from the beginning, and not limited to mega centers and government clinics, but private medical facilities and pharmacies and even supermarkets like in other countries.

He suggested the government should expand Covid-19 testing centres and also incentivize those businesses with Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) in place by at least allowing them to open if not subsidizing them.

Dr Oh also said there should be more proactive vaccination centres especially in the interior and in less well off neighborhood.

Meanwhile, when referring to the report, a Lecturer from Communication Department, Faculty of Communication, Visual Art and Computing, Universiti Selangor (Unisel) Ismail Hashim said: “Yes, not denying, world power struggles between two superpowers, but Malaysia must not be led or trap into this issue.”

“Our priorities is handling the (Covid-19) issues and the stability of our politics, he said, sharing a similar views with Dr Oh.

He pointed the issue of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 (in 2014), until now has not being solved.

“It’s the same with the (Covid-19) pandemic, the issue of whether its a lab created or naturally disease will go on on and would not be solved. What is important for the nation now, as Malaysia is facing the pandemic, it should focus on how to tackle the pandemic and getting the vaccines for its citizens, ” stressed Ismail, adding that Malaysia foreign policy has always been neutral.

A WHO-led team spent four weeks in and around the central city of Wuhan with Chinese researchers in January.

In a joint-report issued in March, the team said the virus had probably been transmitted from bats to humans through another animal.

Source — The article first appeared in TNSConsulting

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