Contaminated Moderna vaccine only in Japan, says minister

Rokiah Mahmud

The contaminated Moderna vaccine doses were only specific to Japan and not supplied to any other country, said Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Isham bin Haji Jaafar.

“The Ministry of Health (MoH) has been in touch with Moderna suppliers and manufacturers, who assured that the doses supplied to Brunei are not in the same allotment being shipped to other countries,” he explained, in response to a question on whether the batch used in Brunei was safe.

“Our ministry has also contacted regulation parties in the region, and so far, they have had no issues with the Moderna vaccine. However, continuous monitoring will be conducted, as safety is the priority of the MoH.”

Meanwhile, on the issue of health and beauty products being detained by the Royal Customs and Excise Department (RCED), Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah said, “The RCED will need to see the import permit, prior to releasing such items.”

He added, “Before the COVID-19 outbreak, few people used e-commerce platforms, compared to the current situation. At present, many are turning to online or e-commerce platforms to bring in their products, resulting in plenty of items needing to be declared.

“According to the RCED’s Client Charter (TPOR), imported items are usually released within 24 hours, but with many turning to e-commerce, it will take some time to have these items declared.

“The MoH and RCED have already had discussions on this matter. Insya Allah, a press release will be issued in the near future, to notify the public on the latest procedures.”