A massive 79.47% of the Thai public want to see their local authorities handle the distribution of vaccines as significant majorities have no confidence in the government and believe that the vaccination campaign is being influenced by politics.

Thai authorities, over the weekend, rejected a Taiwanese suggestion that it was prioritising the delivery of vaccines for the kingdom’s own vaccination campaign as polls suggested the public has little faith in the government’s handling of the efforts.

Over the weekend, government spokesperson, Trisulee Traisanakul, responded on Twitter to a claim made by Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen on Friday that Thailand was prioritising access to AstraZeneca deliveries for its own use.

A government spokesperson has denied a claim made on Friday by the President of Taiwan that Thailand was holding back vaccine supplies to the island state which has recently suffered its first serious outbreak of Covid-19.

Heretofore, Taiwan was recognised worldwide as the country that had best handled the pandemic with no lockdown until recently and very low levels of infection. It was the first state and government to recognise the virus that emerged from China in early 2020.

The country’s 18 month run of successfully preventing the vaccine from taking hold was brought to an end by employees working with China Airlines and Novotel contracting the British B117 variants. It then spread rapidly when it reached adult entertainment venues in the Wanhua district of Taipei just as the third wave emerged in Thailand in Bangkok’s Thong Lor district.

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen made the claim on Friday as that country confronts a serious outbreak

On Friday, President Tsai Ing-wen confirmed that Taiwan was awaiting 10 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine being manufactured in Thailand but that the problem was the kingdom was ‘giving priority for vaccines to be used in Thailand’.

Earlier in the week, in both Malaysia and the Philippines, officials signalled hold-ups in the delivery of the AstraZeneca vaccine from Thailand and suggested the issue was production problems at the Siam Bioscience plant in Pathum Thani.

On Saturday, Trisulee Traisanakul, deputy government spokesperson, took to social media site Twitter to deny the Taiwanese claim.

‘Thailand is not blocking exports of AstraZeneca,’ she said. ‘It is a matter for the producer to manage.’

AstraZeneca and Siam Bioscience not responding to press enquiries on Southeast Asian delivery delays

Both AstraZeneca and Siam Bioscience could not be contacted over the weekend for a comment on the news from Taiwan or throughout last week over reports driven by comments from senior officials in both Malaysia and the Philippines.

The Siam Bioscience plant in Thailand is tasked with producing 200 million doses of the Oxford University developed vaccine for distribution throughout Southeast Asia.

It comes as the government is being warned by industry leaders and economic analysts that it must keep to its target of at least 400,000 doses per day for the vaccination campaign which kicked off on an industrial scale on June 7th.

Majority of public lacks confidence in government’s ability to carry out the vaccination campaign 

A National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) opinion poll, published in the Bangkok Post on Sunday, showed a decisive majority of respondents drawn from a cross-section of adults in Thailand, saying they were not confident of the government’s ability to deliver the required number of administered vaccines in June.

61.23% indicated they were not confident with 39.22% saying they had little confidence in the government’s ability while 22.01% had no confidence at all.

On the other hand, 14.78% were highly confident with 22.70%, in total, having some faith in authorities.

The remainder of the respondents had no idea or were simply not interested.

Public want vaccines handled by local authorities

The same poll also showed 61.84% of the Thai public believed that the process of allocating and distributing vaccines was being politicised with 28.1% believing that this was quite a decisive factor.

The poll showed an overwhelming majority of the public, 79.47% of those asked, would prefer to see the distribution of vaccines handled by local authorities throughout the kingdom by devolving to them the power to purchase vaccines from government agencies.

They believed that this approach would be more effective.

Join the Thai News forum, follow Thai Examiner on Facebook here
Receive all our stories as they come out on Telegram here
Follow Thai Examiner here

Further reading:

Anutin signs up Pfizer for 20 million doses but warns that Covid-19 may be with us for some time into the future

Bottlenecks as 28 die after receiving a vaccine amid surging demand with 5% already vaccinated nationwide

Jab site for expats as country’s second vaccination phase begins driven by locally produced AstraZeneca doses

Door open to expats for vaccine appointments, they simply have to push says top official

Thai Princess steps into the vaccination drive as there is positive news from officials in Phuket

Expats to get vaccine app as Buriram threatens jail for anyone not complying with jab rollout mission

Thai King speaks candidly and insightfully on the danger posed by depression to his young audience

Government making it easier for expats to access vaccine rollout including private sector option

‘No one is safe until everyone is safe.’ Foreigners and expats on vaccine to do list says top official at ministry

Thai government urged to buy more vaccine doses at any cost as the only way out of a growing crisis

Thailand may face a ‘real crisis’ as 3rd virus wave fails to slow amid record deaths says top doctor

Expats over 60 and with underlying conditions can register for free Covid vaccinations in June & July

PM Prayut hands power back to the CCSA to find 100 million vaccine doses to defeat Covid-19

Thailand scrambles to procure more vaccines as infections and deaths from Covid-19 jump sharply

Executive with Thai Air Asia shareholder firm warns that the virus downturn has wreaked havoc

Officials turn to hotels for more scarce hospital beds but say the 3rd wave can be defeated in May

Still time to avoid lockdown says Health Minister as 3rd virus wave dwarfs all infections to date

Fears that a 3rd wave of Covid-19 may have begun in Thailand with top doctors raising the alarm

Centre for Covid-19 announces ‘bubble and seal’ measures after October 1st with quarantine lifted

PM leads the way as Thailand aims to return to normal by pushing forward its vaccine drive using AstraZeneca

Top docs say vaccine jabs are safe after Thai PM’s jab is cancelled for the second time in two weeks

Vaccination campaign begins in early morning jab event but hopes for more foreign tourists set back

Economy to rebound as the year progresses driven by exports and a return of mass foreign tourism

Door closing on quick foreign tourism return as economic recovery is delayed to the end of 2022

Phuket’s plan to self vaccinate on hold as Interior Ministry orders private sector out of vaccine deals

Top Thai official says vaccine passports are legally a matter for the WHO under international law

Top virologist Dr Yong defends the use of the Sinovac vaccine to protect frontline medical staff at high risk

Refloat of foreign tourism in the 2nd half of 2021 with vaccines pushed by minister and industry for the sector

Public in Bangkok in stirring show of support for the monarchy on King Bhumibol’s birthday, December 5th

King and Queen visit South to a rapturous salute from well-wishers in Trang and Phatthalung provinces

King tells western TV crews that he loves all Thai people equally and the kingdom is the land of compromise

Protest leader blacked out after illegal attempt to rearrest him on Friday night in Bangkok failed after fracas

PM says he is not resigning but seeks resolution as key protest leader, Anon, chooses to stay in prison

Top minister accuses protesters of imperilling economic recovery and the health of Thai people at this time

Protest leader tells Prayut his term as PM is over as thousands again take to the Bangkok streets against him

Strength of support for the monarchy being seen this week as political unrest deepens into standoff