Dzulkefly says nine million doses of expired Covid-19 vaccine worth RM185m, urges public to not blame previous health ministers

KUALA LUMPUR, July 11 — Some nine million expired Covid-19 vaccine doses worth RM185 million have been thrown away, Health Minister Datuk Seri Dzulkefly Ahmad said today.

Speaking in Dewan Rakyat, Dzulkefly however pointed out that his predecessors were not to be blamed as the Covid-19 pandemic was unprecedented.

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“If there is an excess, it is related to that time when the competition to get the vaccine was very intense,” he told the Parliament here.

He said since the Covid-19 immunisation programme started in February 24, 2020, the Malaysian government has received as many as 84.5 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine either from procurement or donations.

“Until June 11, 2024, 9,159,151 doses in the vaccine stock of various brands have expired, which is 10.8 per cent of the total doses we have,” he said during the oral question session in response to Jelebu MP Datuk Jalaluddin Alias.

He added that the disposal process is carried out according to asset and stock management procedures.

“For the ministers before me, they did not have the standard operating procedures, best practice or benchmarking because it was a pandemic for the first time, so with that I understand,” he stated.

Last year, DAP lawmaker Wong Kah Woh had urged then health minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa to reveal the financial cost that resulted from the losses of expired Covid-19 vaccines.

The Taiping MP, who was previously the chairman of the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee, said that a health minister should not hide behind the non-disclosure agreement every time someone questions the price or the acquisition process of the vaccines.

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