Jakarta (ANTARA) - Minister of Communications and Informatics Johnny G. Plate urged the people at large in Indonesia to immediately receive vaccination against COVID-19 and complete taking the entire dosage to protect themselves and those around them.

"People cannot choose the brand of the vaccine that they want. Please get vaccinated immediately to protect themselves, their families, and the people around them," Plate noted in a written statement on Thursday.

The minister later highlighted a phenomenon of people delaying vaccination for a certain vaccine brand of their choice. This behavior could hinder the efforts to accelerate vaccination being pursued by the government.

Currently, 11 types of COVID-19 vaccines have received emergency use permits from the Food and Drug Supervisory Agency (BPOM). The government urges the public to not be picky about vaccine brands, as all brands provided by the government are equally safe and efficacious.

The government also continues to evaluate and monitor the development of a new variant of the coronavirus called Omicron detected in 45 countries.

As recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO), the government will immediately conduct genome sequencing, restrict community activities, and accelerate vaccination for vulnerable communities.

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"To this end, the public is still urged to implement health protocols, not be careless, and limit mobility," Plate affirmed.

On December 8, Indonesia received the 149th and 150th batches of the COVID-19 vaccine. On that day, 767,520 doses of the Pfizer vaccine and four million doses of Covovax vaccine arrived.

The Pfizer vaccine, which arrived at Ahmad Yani Airport, Semarang, was immediately distributed to the Central Java Health Service.

The government is committed to obtaining vaccine stocks both through bilateral and multilateral schemes to protect the public from the threat of the coronavirus.

From the arrival of the 149th and 150th vaccine batches, Indonesia had received over 400 million doses of vaccine both in the form of raw materials (bulk) and ready-to-use vaccine.

Sufficient vaccine stocks will be optimal if supported by the acceleration of the vaccination program. Hence, support and participation of the community to receive vaccination is urgently required, Plate emphasized.

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Translator: Natisha A, Resinta S
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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