Has Malaysia lost control over the third wave of the Covid-19 Pandemic?

Malaysia registered the second highest daily increase of Covid-19 cases yesterday – 1,290 new cases and four deaths to reach a cumulative total of 51,680 Covid-19 cases and 326 deaths.

If Covid-18 infection increases at the daily average of the past week, i.e. 1,127 cases a day, we are likely to overtake China by the end of the year as a country with more number of Covid-19 infections.

Today, China is placed No. 65th country with 86,381 Covid-19 cases, far behind eleven countries which have passed the million mark of Covid-19 cases, led by United States with over 12 million cases, India second with over 9 million cases, Brazil third with nearly six million cases, France fourth and Russia fifth with each country over two million cases.

The global cumulative total for Covid-19 cases have passed the 57 million mark while global cumulative total for fatalities have exceeded 1.36 million lives.

In the early period of the Covid-19 epidemic, when China was the top No. 1 country in the world with the most number of Covid-19 cases, Malaysia was placed 18th in the world for Covid-19 infections.

Malaysia made considerable progress but with the advent of the third wave of the pandemic, we have lagged behind and lost out to several other nations and is now placed No. 84 among countries in the world with 51,680 cases.

If we continue with four-digit daily increase of Covid-19 infections, we will overtake Singapore in a week and China by the end of the year as a country with more Covid-19 infections.

Have we lost control over the third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic?

We must acknowledge that while the Covid-19 pandemic is not as dire as the countries which top the world in the Covid-19 pandemic, whether in terms of infections or fatalities (Mexico just reported nearly 100,000 fatalities, while United States suffered more than 258,000 fatalities; Brazil more than 168,000 fatalities and India more than 132,000 fatalities), Malaysia seems to have lost its way in the war against the Covid-19 pandemic.

I had suggested more than six months ago that the government should adopt an “all-of-government” and “whole-of-society” approach if the invisible war against the Covid-19 pandemic, but this advice had fallen on deaf ears the government has yet to adopt an “all-of-government” and “whole-of-society” approach if the invisible war against the Covid-19 pandemic is going to be successful in Malaysia.

The Malaysian people are prepared to unite and show discipline to win the war against the Covid-19 pandemic but Ministers and government leaders are not showing the example.

The Perikatan Nasional government is only interested in using the Covid-19 pandemic to convince the Yang di Pertuan Agong to declare a state of emergency in Malaysia and suspend Parliament, and this is why next Thursday will be a D-Day for parliamentary democracy in Malaysia.

There has been no positive response to the Opposition overture of a “confidence-and-supply” agreement to enable the 2021 Budget to be passed to allow an “all-of-government” and “whole-of-society” approach in the battle against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Is it possible before the Second Reading of the 2021 Budget next Thursday for the Muhyiddin government to show a positive response to the “confidence and supply” proposal so that there could be an “all-of-government” and “whole-of-society” war against the Covid-19 epidemic led by all the 220 MPs in Parliament?

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri