Sunday, July 25, 2021

Rafidah, coming up with a national recovery plan is not like distributing APs

While some like former minister Rafidah Aziz have been quick to criticise the government's Covid-19 recovery plan, others appreciate it as a practical and timely framework for moving on.

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Former minister Rafidah Aziz was quick to criticise the government’s Covid-19 recovery plan. She admitted that the government had a plan but not a strategy moving forward.

To me this is nitpicking from a former politician and really does not appreciate the practicality of the prime minister’s National Recovery Plan. Call it a “plan” or “strategy” or whatever you want, but at least the framework now is clearer.

As a business operator in Seremban, I appreciate the government’s plan and framework to move forward in phases. It is more transparent and, I believe if executed properly, will see an orderly transition from one phase to the other.

Moreover, in order to progress from one phase to the other, we need to fulfil a criteria of three main indicators – daily positive cases, rate of ICU capacity available and percentage of population completing a second vaccine dose.

I am no expert in public health, but I believe that the three indicators are fair KPIs to meet to move forward. It is practical yet cautious. Rolling out a recovery plan for a nation so battered by the twin public health and economic crises is not as easy as distributing approved permits (APs) for foreign cars.

The national recovery plan is progressive – taking us forward to an “exit” and not regressive like a tier system where you can move from forward and backward from one tier to the other like in the UK previously.

The previous “lockdown only” strategy adopted by the Malaysian government was acceptable at first but after more than a year, it simply is not sustainable. It is an endless cycle of lockdown-relax-lockdown-when-cases-go-down-and-lockdown-again-when-cases-go-up. It has been very disruptive for business. For a business operator in a non-essential business like myself, it was very difficult to plan ahead and in the end my business has suffered and I am sure many others in business can relate to this.

So Rafidah, criticise all you want whether this plan is with or without strategy, but to me it is practical and timely.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of MalaysiaNow.

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