Thursday, February 20, 2020

Singapore Minister Cannot Mask Scorn on Mask-wearers

Leaked audio has emerged of Singapore’s Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing (right) criticizing not only his fellow citizens for wearing and hoarding medical masks – but also Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam for appearing in one. 

The recording, which has been widely shared on Singaporean social media, features Chan alleging that the sight of the mask-clad Lam had prompted panic-buying in Hong Kong. 

If Singaporean officials had emulated Lam, Chan said, "our hospital system would have broken down" as there would be "no more masks". And rightly so. 

And Lam (left) who wore a medical mask during a January 28 press conference on Covid-19, had invited scathing paroxysms of searing criticisms in Hong Kong – where the wearing of masks in public was banned during months of anti-government demonstrations in 2019. In case you didn't know, the ban was an attempt to keep protesters and rioters from hiding their identities. 

As an aside, Lam wasn’t even wearing the mask properly – her nose was naked for all to see! 

Masks have been dividing opinion – Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen (far left) threatened to eject anyone wearing a mask from his press conferences, but Thailand Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul (left) criticized foreign visitors for not wearing masks, even suggesting they be expelled from the country for putting Thais at risk during the Covid-19 flare-up. 

Anyway, the source of the said audio is unknown, but appears to be a recording of a closed-door meeting conducted last week at the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry. 

Drawing laughter from his audience, Chan chastised his fellow citizens for being "disgraceful" and "idiotic" for their frenzied hoarding and purchasing of food and household items in Singapore – where 81 cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed. 

In a post on his personal Facebook on Monday, Chan acknowledged that the meeting had taken place, but did not confirm or deny making the comments heard in the recording. Chan said he had a "frank discussion" with the chamber, concluding his post by writing that "hearsay taken out of context will be unhelpful to trust-building and collective actions in these difficult times" – and which I agree! 

Fellow neighbors, be like us Malaysians! Stay cool, calm and collected – Life must go on and as for Covid-19, it shall soon pass. 

And if you really have this dire need to protect yourself, then I suggest you take spoonfuls of curry soup every day. 

I do and sure enough, it is keeping all viruses away! 

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