The Ministry of Health (MoH) is currently in discussions with the Public Service Department (JPA) regarding the possibility of imposing penalties on civil servants who refuse to take the COVID-19 shot without any valid medical reasons, according to Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.
The minister added that he requested employers in certain sectors to impose conditions that workers must get vaccinated if they want to return to work, though he did not clarify which sectors exactly. He earlier discussed with the Ministry of Education (MoE) on making the vaccine mandatory for teachers but claimed that such a mandate would have legal implications.
On that note, MoE revealed earlier this month that more than 2500 have rejected the vaccine, out of nearly half a million teachers nationwide. As of 11 September, 88.56% of teachers had received two doses of the COVID-19 jab, while 97.46% had received at least one dose.
Education Minister Dr Radzi Mohd Jidin announced that this small minority of unvaccinated teachers will still need to show up when schools reopen in October. However, they will be separated from their vaccinated colleagues and will not be allowed to teach students in face-to-face classes, but will instead be given other assignments.
To prepare for the reopening of schools, the government has started inoculating teenagers aged 12-17 with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. The programme initially started in Sarawak but has recently expanded to Labuan, Putrajaya, Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Kedah, Perlis, and Pahang.