The PAP wasn’t prepared for the haze!
If the Govt wasn’t prepared for the haze, then where did the stockpile of 9 million N95 masks come from? These masks don’t just appear overnight. They expire every 3 years and have to be continuously replenished. And it is a major logistical challenge to distribute these masks to pharmacies all over the country.
If the Govt wasn’t prepared for the haze, then why is there already an Inter-Agency Haze Task Force comprising 23 govt bodies with plans in place when the haze hits? If you go to the websites of these agencies, you can see how these agencies have reacted to the haze by setting guidelines (e.g. medical assistance at polyclinics, closure of school activities etc)
If you are complaining that the Govt isn’t giving you free masks, then it is a sign of how unreasonable you are. Assistance has to be given to those who need it most, such as the poor, elderly and the vulnerable hospital patients. If you can read this message online, you can already afford a $3 mask. Don’t be a scrooge and pay for your own god-damn mask.
Shameless online critics politicizing the haze, instead of lending a hand.
In other countries, an externally-triggered crisis would normally cause citizens to put aside their differences and rally towards a cause. Notice how the Americans came together after 9/11 and the Boston bombings? Notice how the Japanese [edited from Japs] came together to help each other after Fukushima?
But in Singapore, we have multiple sites from the online community that are known to be anti-PAP and politicize almost all events as resulting from the incompetence of the PAP. The haze is no exception. Online commentary has degenerated into a mudfest of nitpicking the words of politicians and how “slow” the Govt’s reaction has been.
Of particular note is The Heart Truths, a site that claims to come across as a level-headed critique of the PAP, but is actually a site that uses half-truths and misquoted information. For example, the author tried to poke holes at VB’s claims that “other countries also use 24-hour averages for their air quality indices”. However, this claim was swiftly rebutted by MEWR, who honestly speaking should be concentrating on tackling the haze rather than rebutting unfounded online accusations. I would urge readers to boycott The Heart Truths. Life’s too short to read the lies of this author.
The ironic joke is that while all these complaints about the PAP are intended to make the Govt look bad, it actually speaks volumes about the site owners and authors themselves. These sites are not using their online reach to reach out to the public and spread reassuring words on how to deal with the haze, or how to contribute to helping your neighbor, or help spread the message on what is being done to combat the haze. They prefer to politicize the issue. Even the Worker’s Party has chosen not to politicize the haze. By focusing their efforts on blaming the Govt instead of providing help and guidance, it goes to show who really loves Singapore, and who would rather see Singapore burn than to cede power to the PAP.
Shameless public behavior
There’s a world of difference in the way Singaporeans have reacted to the haze compared to say, Japan.
When Fukushima happened, the Japanese were queuing up in an orderly manner for essential supplies like water, even though they have lost their homes and were facing a looming nuclear disaster.
When the haze happened, we see some Singaporeans hoarding masks, or even worse, reselling those masks at a marked-up profit. This is bad for everyone. Masks are cheap enough such that they can be easily hoarded. If the hoarding is bad enough, then it may not be enough for the Govt to release their N95 stockpile. It’s no wonder the PM had to tell people not to hoard masks.