PETALING JAYA, Nov 29 (Sin Chew Daily) – Public health expert feels that the election SOPs adopted in Melaka may not be suitable for the general election which should be deferred due to the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic.
Malaysian Public Health Physicians’ Association (PPPKAM) president Dr Zainal Ariffin Omar said a general election should only be held when the daily new infection numbers stay consistently below the 5,000-mark with no increase in ICU cases and deaths, adding that election should be held only after mid-2022.
He told Sin Chew Daily the SOPs imposed during the Melaka state polls were not fully complied with, and it would be difficult for the authorities to monitor and enforce SOP compliance if the same SOPs were to be duplicated in the general election.
With new clusters and community infection risks, Zainal Ariffin feels that it is not yet time to hold the general election at this juncture.
“Let’s wait for the daily new infection numbers to stay consistently below 5,000 with no increase in ICU cases and deaths.”
He pointed out that if GE15 were to be held very soon, the government must be adequately prepared to closely monitor the situation of the pandemic, in particular the new Omicron variant, while reminding the public to constantly adhere to the SOPs.
Many people feel that the prime minister should take heed of the health minister’s advice not to rush into another election so soon.