#kerajaangagal164 – Are we in the midst of a fifth wave?

Malaysia has overtaken Japan two weeks before the opening of the Tokyo Olympics to be ranked No. 33 among nations in the world with the most cumulative total of Covid-19 cases.

By the present rate of Covid-19 infection, by the middle of the month, Malaysia will go another step down the slippery slope of a worst-performing nation in the Covid-19 pandemic and overtake Israel to be ranked No. 32.

We are likely to break the 900,000-mark before the 20th of the month and might break the million mark at the end of the month – a month before we celebrate our 58th anniversary of the National Day – as the Muhyiddin government is not only utterly helpless but too preoccupied with its political survival in the fast-deteriorating Covid-19 situation in Malaysia.

Malaysia is the undisputed champion in the world as it is the only country in the world which has the dubious record of falling over 50 rankings in the last eight months from its 85th position in November 2020 among the nations in the world with the most cumulative total of Covid-19 cases to the now 33rd ranking. By our 58th National Day on August 31, we will fall below the 30th ranking.

Before emergency was declared on January 11, 2021 to combat the new coronavirus, there were 551 deaths – the result of 12 months’ toll. But the toll for the first nine days of July - 653 deaths - is more than the total toll in the first 12 months of the Covd-19 pandemic. What type of an emergency is this?

Are we in the midst of a fifth Covi9d-19 wave in Malaysia?

The Health Minister said no.

In April, he said the fourth wave of Covid-19 pandemic in Malaysia will not happen unless cases involving domestic or local transmission record zero in the current third wave before the number of cases increase sharply the next day.

It is regrettable that the Health Minister was more interested in his game of semantics than with the problem on the ground and the sufferings of the people caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Iran has declared all non-essential businesses in the Islamic Republic to be shuttered in 275 cities and the ban on inter-Iran travel for fear of a “fifth wave” of Covid-19 throughout the nation, while in Spain, the fifth wave started on June 22nd when the fortnightly infection rate from the fourth wave was at its lowest: 92 cases per 100,000 inhabitants –but there was no reference either in Iran or Spain that there must be zero transmission in the earlier wave first before we talk about a new wave.

There are medical experts who believe that the Covid-19 cases announce daily was a serious undercount of the actual Covid-19 cases because of the serious under-testing in Malaysia – as we are only doing a third the daily minimum of 200,000-300,000 tests a day. There is also the high positivity rate.

The government should draw up a new strategy and approach to replace the failed strategy so far. This is why the reconvening of Parliament and the State Assemblies are important.

I call on the government to immediately set up food banks throughout the country to help the vulnerable groups who are adversely affected by the lockdowns and the Covid-19 pandemic.

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri