White Paper to study COVID-19 vaccine procurement procedures – Dr Zaliha

PUTRAJAYA – The White Paper on the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine will examine the procurement procedure transparently, for the benefit of the people, said Health Minister, Dr Zaliha Mustafa.

She said the Health Ministry (MOH) has established a working team to draft the White Paper following the decision of the Cabinet meeting, on Jan 18, to provide a comprehensive overview of the management of the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine.

She added that the White Paper will examine the procurement procedures carried out, following initial findings by the Attorney-General’s Chambers and the Legal Affairs Division of the Prime Minister’s Department, who conducted detailed due diligence, particularly on the terms of the COVID-19 vaccine supply agreement which has been signed and made during the emergency period.

“In line with the decision made during the Cabinet meeting, the MOH will ensure that any procurement matters, including the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine under this ministry, are carried out more carefully, with integrity, and ensure that it has reciprocal benefits for the government,” she said in a statement.

On Feb 8, Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said that the White Paper on the acquisition and cost of the purchase of the COVID-19 vaccine will be tabled at the next Parliament session, after it was found not to follow procedures and was done without the agreement of the Attorney-General.

Anwar was reported to have said that the White Paper will be tabled because irregularities were detected. It is believed that it did not follow regulations or the required process. The procurement of certain types of vaccine was very doubtful in terms of the amount and cost involved. – Bernama / pic Muhd Amin Naharul