KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 3, 2015:
The worsening haze conditions have not only taken a toll on Malaysians, but also Singaporeans who have been suffering unhealthy air.
But instead of blaming the air quality on its neighbour Indonesia, Singaporeans decided to “thank” the country via thankyouindoforthecleanair.com.
It is unknown when exactly the website was created, but it came into existence this year and calls on Singaporeans to “thank” Indonesia for the clean air experienced for 11 months every year.
This was based on Indonesian Vice-President Jusuf Kalla having rapped neighbouring countries for complaining about the haze instead of being grateful for the clean air they enjoyed for the rest of the year.
In March this year, Jusuf was quoted by the Jakarta Globe as saying: “For 11 months they enjoyed nice air from Indonesia and they never thanked us.”
Indonesia was “thanked” more than two million times, along with comments dedicated to Jusuf, who was nicknamed Juju.
“Thank you so much. Now you can give us another month of clean air too since you are so nice,” posted Meh123.
Another netizen, who used the name Your Boss, wrote: “Thank you! For the past 20 years, you have work(ed) tirelessly to maintain your KPI of supplying Singapore clean air for 11months/year.”
One user named N95 Mask Producer “thanked” Jusuf for increasing their business.
“Our deepest and heartfelt thanks to Indonesia. For 11 months we have no business — now we earn enough to cover costs for the whole of next year. Kind of like the Bak Kwa trade,” the user wrote.
(Wikipedia states that Bakkwa, also known as rougan, is a Chinese (Hokkien) salty-sweet dried meat product similar to jerky, popular usually during Chinese New Year.)
Meanwhile, the hashtag #TerimaKasihIndonesia was also trending on Twitter, with many sharing present haze conditions.
One netizen with the twitter handle @Lukhmxn tweeted a picture and wrote: “Jerebu semakin teruk di uitmpp.” (“Haze worsening at Penang UiTM.”).
Twitter user @thezulfo wrote: “@Sick of hearing ‘yg bakar hutan tu company Malaysia juga’. Indonesia authority ambil tindakan saja la. #TerimaKasihIndonesia.”
(“Sick of hearing ‘those burning forests are also Malaysian companies’. Just take action Indonesian authorities.”)
As at 4pm, the Air Pollutant Index (API) readings remained at unhealthy levels in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Malacca and Negri Sembilan. Nilai and Seremban recorded the highest readings thus far, both at 166.
Port Klang and Shah Alam recorded API readings of 155 and 161 respectively, followed by Batu Muda (Jalan Ipoh), Kuala Lumpur (156), Petaling Jaya (147), Putrajaya (146), Banting (140) and Malacca 149.
Penang (USM) recorded an API reading of 109 (unhealthy). Prai was 106. Kuantan registered 103.
Readings in Singapore (which also incorporates tinier particles) were between 241 and 250.