Category: Viral

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Underfed and chained up for endless hours, many elephants working in Thailand’s tourism sector may starve, be sold to zoos or be shifted into the illegal logging trade, campaigners warn, as the coronavirus decimates visitor numbers.

Before the virus, life for the kingdom’s estimated 2,000 elephants working in tourism was already stressful, with abusive methods often used to ‘break them’ into giving rides and performing tricks at money-spinning animal shows.

With global travel paralysed the animals are unable to pay their way, including the 300 kilograms (660 pounds) of food a day a captive elephant needs to survive.

lephant camps and conservationists warn hunger and the threat of renewed exploitation lie ahead, without an urgent bailout.

“My boss is doing what he can but we have no money,” Kosin, a mahout  — or elephant handler — says of the Chiang Mai camp where his elephant Ekkasit is living on a restricted diet.

Chiang Mai is Thailand’s northern tourist hub, an area of rolling hills dotted by elephant camps and sanctuaries ranging from the exploitative to the humane.

Footage sent to AFP from another camp in the area shows lines of elephants tethered by a foot to wooden poles, some visibly distressed, rocking their heads back and forth.

Around 2,000 elephants are currently “unemployed” as the virus eviscerates Thailand’s tourist industry, says Theerapat Trungprakan, president of the Thai Elephant Alliance Association.

The lack of cash is limiting the fibrous food available to the elephants “which will have a physical effect”, he added.

Wages for the mahouts who look after them have dropped by 70 per cent.

Theerapat fears the creatures could soon be used in illegal logging activities along the Thai-Myanmar border — in breach of a 30-year-old law banning the use of elephants to transport wood.

Others “could be forced (to beg) on the streets,” he said.

It is yet another twist in the saga of the exploitation of elephants, which animal rights campaigners have long been fighting to protect from the abusive tourism industry.

‘Crisis point’

For those hawking a once-in-a-lifetime experience with the giant creatures — whether from afar or up close — the slump began in late January.

Chinese visitors, who make up the majority of Thailand’s 40 million tourists, plunged by more than 80 per cent in February as China locked down cities hard-hit by the virus and banned external travel.

By March, the travel restrictions into Thailand — which has 1,388 confirmed cases of the virus — had extended to Western countries.

With elephants increasingly malnourished due to the loss of income, the situation is “at a crisis point,” says Saengduean Chailert, owner of Elephant Nature Park.

Her sanctuary for around 80 rescued pachyderms only allows visitors to observe the creatures, a philosophy at odds with venues that have them performing tricks and offering rides.

She has organised a fund to feed elephants and help mahouts in almost 50 camps nationwide, fearing the only options will soon be limited to zoos, starvation or logging work.

For those restrained by short chains all day, the stress could lead to fights breaking out, says Saengduean, of camps that can no longer afford medical treatment for the creatures.

Calls are mounting for the government to fund stricken camps to ensure the welfare of elephants.

“We need 1,000 baht a day (S$43) for each elephant,” says Apichet Duangdee, who runs the Elephant Rescue Park.

Freeing his eight mammals rescued from circuses and loggers into the forests is out of the question as they would likely be killed in territorial fights with wild elephants.

He is planning to take out a two million baht loan soon to keep his elephants fed.

“I will not abandon them,” he added.

AsiaOne

Do you know that our Malaysian prison inmates produce quite a lot of things that you see in the market these days? These products produced by them range from food to clothing and even furniture!

Now that our country is in need of PPEs (Personal Protective Equipment), the prison inmates in Penor prison, Kuantan have stepped up and took it upon themselves to produce PPEs for our frontliners!

Prison inmates worked every day to produce these suits

According to The Star, 18 prison inmates in the Penor prison have been working 9am – 5pm (Monday to Sunday) in the prison sewing workshop to produce PPEs. The sewing operations started on 27th March and till now, the inmates have been able to stably produce 20 sets of suits daily.

The completed suits will be checked by the prison staff and then they will be sent to the Pahang state secretary office to be distributed to the state health department.

Penor Prison director Datuk Abu Hasan Hussain said that in addition to that, the Prison Women Staff and Wives of Prison Staff Association (Persiap) has also pitched in and produced about 525 face shields for the frontliners!

One of the inmates, Man, 26 has said that by helping cut the PPE material, he feels that he contributed to the country in his own little way.

“I know it (Covid-19) is contagious, I am also proud to be able to help even in prison. My contribution is not great, but I hope it can help protect struggling medical personnel.”

This is so inspiring! Since we’re all going into the second phase of the MCO soon, we should all continue to stay at home and to keep ourselves hygienic so that we can help to break the chain!

worldofbuzz

On 16th March 2020, our Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced that there will be a Movement Control Order that will be enforced from 18th till 31st March. However, the MCO was later extended for another two weeks till 14th April 2020.

Brave frontliners are risking their lives every day

While we are home, our frontliners are out there, fighting this invisible army of viruses. Our doctors and nurses are constantly exposed to it while our police officers and army officials are making sure everyone stays home so that the chain can be broken.

Giving starter packs to our frontliners

As a symbol of gratefulness towards the frontliners, Akisama Group, the developer of RC Residences has launched a campaign named “Care for the Frontliners“. The aim of this campaign is to supply frontliners with a starter pack full of essentials so that they can continue to fight this battle against Covid-19 without any worries.

The starter packs include umbrellas and face masks among other things which are especially useful for the police officers and army officials as they are stationed outdoors no matter rain or shine.

Without these frontliners, who knows what state our country would be in now. So, fellow Malaysians, let’s all come together (figuratively) and stay at home! 

Other than that, RC Residences has also said that they will be giving us Malaysians vouchers worth RM8,000 during this MCO, find out more here!

-WORLDOFBUZZ

The compliance rate for the Movement Control Order (MCO) is currently at 95% and the government aspires to reach total compliance of 100%. Unfortunately, reaching a total compliance of 100% is not that easy as there are still people who are refusing to adhere to the MCO.

Frustrated by the errant residences in his neighbourhood, this man in Taman Anika Jaya, Terengganu had decided to take it upon himself and scare his neighbours into staying at home.

Muhammad Urabil Alias had dressed as a ghost in white sheets to spook his errant neighbours (who are mostly youngsters) into not stepping out of their house. Yikes! 

Urabil posted pictures of him in action and it has since gone viral, garnering over 3,500 shares on Facebook. Many found his approach humorous rather than scary.

According to the Malay Mail, Urabil said the authorities had been patrolling his housing area since the enforcement of MCO but there were still some who remained stubborn.

He hoped that by posting these pictures on Facebook, his neighbours would be frightened and would not come out of their house at night.

Just as he had hoped, his crazy idea had worked. Urabil added that his stunt actually worked as the number of people who came out at night had reduced after he posted the pictures, which were taken by his wife Norhayati Nayan.

“After I uploaded the photos on FB, they panicked and were scared to come out,” Urabil said via Harian Metro.

Following the viral post, many netizens have questioned the photo’s authenticity which at this point is obviously fake.

“From my status itself you can see I was not serious but they still think the photos are real.” Urabil stated. He had apologised on behalf of himself and his wife if they had gone overboard.

All jokes aside, we hope everyone practices social distancing and stays at home during the MCO. We can help the frontliners by exercising our social responsibility in this battle against Covid-19.

-worldofbuzz

Menara City One Condominium located on Jalan Masjid India, Kuala Lumpur has been placed under lockdown after 17 Covid-19 cases were recorded.

According to Malaysia Kini, this is third lockdown, or enhanced movement control order (MCO) that the government has announced. The first two were applied on two villages in Simpang Renggam, Kluang on 27 March and seven villages in Hulu Langat yesterday (29 March) after a spike in Covid-19 cases there.

The Menara City One lockdown involves 3,200 residents in 502 residential units and 49 shops at the condominium, and will take effect at midnight until 13 April.

“The purpose of the enhanced MCO is to prevent Covid-19 from spreading out of the area,” said Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, who is also the coordinating senior minister for security matters.

This is the first specific building that an enhanced MCO has been applied to, and the first such order in an urban area.

However, even though the building is under lockdown, businesses selling essential goods at the complex will still be allowed to operate. Residents will also be allowed to order food online which will be delivered to the lobby.

Additionally, while residents are not allowed to leave the complex, they can still go out of their units.

Ismail said a medical base will be set up at the condominium and Covid-19 screening will be conducted from unit to unit. The complex will also be guarded by police, army, civil defense force and Rela personnel.

“All residents are asked to remain calm, give their full cooperation to Health Ministry officials and obey instructions by the authorities,” he said.

-worldofbuzz

Times of crisis can bring out the best in people, and that is what most certainly was the case with a group of Food Panda deliverymen, who took it upon themselves to take care for the well-being of the underprivileged in Ipoh, according to this Facebook post!

While we may complain about staying home for another two weeks, we often overlook the fact that we get to do so in the comfort of our homes, with food to eat.

In which case, we have to ask, what will happen to the homeless during this period? Who will provide for them? In order to help them through this difficult time, a group of Food Panda deliverymen decided to band together and deliver free meals to the homeless who live on Ipoh’s streets, with nowhere else to go.

In their cheerful pink uniforms, the deliverymen distributed a number of meals and drinks to those who have been sleeping rough on the streets, providing them with just a moment’s respite from hunger.

And as we can see, the meals were definitely warmly received by those who needed it the most! And what’s more incredible is that these Food Panda delivery men have been doing this for over four days now!

To these abang-abang Food Panda who have been working extra hard to ensure we get meals delivered to our doorstep while also donating to those who are less privileged, we salute you for being shining examples of what Malaysians are! 

-worldofbuzz

MAHKAMAH Sesyen Alor Setar, hari ini, menjatuhkan hukuman denda RM10,000 dan penjara tiga bulan ke atas seorang pembantu kedai atas kesalahan mengeluarkan komunikasi jelik pada 27 Mac lalu.

Tertuduh, Nursahira Mohd Mizuar, 20, membuat pengakuan bersalah selepas pertuduhan dibacakan jurubahasa di hadapan Hakim Murtazadi Amran.

Mengikut kertas pertuduhan, Nursahira melalui Facebook secara sedar membuat dan memulakan komunikasi jelik dengan niat menganiaya orang lain di sebuah rumah di Persiaran Kiara Mas, Pendang, pada jam 10.12 malam, 27 Mac lalu.

Dia didakwa melakukan kesalahan mengikut Seksyen 233(1)(a) Akta Komunikasi dan Multimedia 1998.

Murtazadi mengarahkan hukuman ke atas Nursahira bermula pada tarikh dia ditahan dan sekiranya gagal membayar denda, tertuduh akan dihukum penjara dua bulan.

Pendakwaan dilakukan Timbalan Pendakwa Raya, Aqharie Durranie Aziz manakala tertuduh tidak diwakili peguam.

Dalam kejadian 27 Mac lalu, seorang wanita ditahan polis jam 11.30 malam, selepas dia memuat naik status menghina polis di media sosial miliknya.

Wanita itu dikatakan memuat naik status itu selepas marah dengan tindakan polis mengarahkannya pulang ke rumah ketika anggota terbabit melakukan pemantauan Ops Covid-19 di tepi jalan Pendang-Kobah, Batu Menunggul, kira-kira jam 9 malam.

hmetro

INISIATIF kerajaan China dalam membendung penularan wabak COVID-19 sehingga angka jangkitan virus berkenaan di negara itu berhasil ‘dikawal’ boleh dianggap suatu kejayaan.

Walaupun wabak itu masih mencatatkan peningkatan di seluruh dunia, China sebaliknya berjaya mengawal penularan itu.

Setakat ini, China merekodkan sejumlah 81, 029 kes, dengan peningkatan sebanyak 22 kes sejak Sabtu.

Berdasarkan statistik, ia jauh lebih kecil berbanding peningkatan dalam tempoh 24 jam di Britain dengan 208 kes baharu dalam tempoh 24 jam.

Penutupan seluruh bandar

China telah melakukan kerja-kerja pembendungan terbaik dengan mengisytiharkan darurat ketat pada 23 Januari lalu di Wuhan serta 15 bandar lain di wilayah Hubei bagi mengekang wabak itu daripada terus menular.

Seramai 56 juta penduduk terkesan dengan pengisytiharan itu di mana semua pintu pengangkutan awam (bas, keretapi, penerbangan dan feri), premis perniagaan, kilang-kilang, pejabat serta sekolah turut ditutup rapat.

Malah, petugas kesihatan turut dikerahkan dari seluruh China hanya untuk membantu merawat pesakit yang dijangkiti virus pembunuh itu.

Pembinaan dua hospital

Dua hospital juga dibina hanya dalam masa dua minggu bagi menampung jumlah pesakit yang semakin meningkat setiap hari. Bukan sahaja langkah pembendungan dilakukan di negara itu, malah usaha pengawalan dan pengawasan turut dipertingkat dari semasa ke semasa.

Makluman di media sosial

Pihak kerajaan turut menggunakan platform media sosial serta aplikasi mudah alih bagi mengawasi pergerakan di kawasan yang dikategorikan mengikut warna iaitu hijau, kuning dan merah.

Proses nyahkuman yang kerap

Setiap jalan dan bangunan turut dibersihkan dengan penyemburan cecair pembasmi kuman yang dilakukan dengan kekerapan yang maksimum.

Penggunaan cahaya UV

Firma pengangkutan awam Yanggao mengubah kebuk pembersihan bas henti-hentinya kepada kebuk cahaya UV untuk tujuan nyahkuman pada rangkaian basnya.

Proses yang sebelum ini mengambil masa 40 minit ditambah baik hingga hanya memerlukan tempoh 5 minit bagi setiap bas.

Topeng muka diwajibkan

Semua rakyat turut diwajibkan memakai topeng muka jika menaiki teksi atau ke pasar raya untuk mendapatkan bekalan makanan dengan kerja-kerja bacaan suhu turut menjadi kewajipan semasa memasuki sesebuah bangunan.

Pergerakan dipantau

Selain itu, seluruh kejiranan turut dikawal oleh penguat kuasa yang melakukan rondaan serta pemeriksaan keluar masuk terhadap pelawat yang berkunjung ke sesebuah kawasan perumahan.

Penguatkuasaan ketat

China juga turut memperketat sistem pengkuatkuasaan tentera dan polisnya dengan menahan serta mengurung individu yang melanggar kesalahan di kala penularan wabak tersebut.

Pesanan khidmat masyarakat

Bagi langkah pencegahan, pesanan khidmat masyarakat juga sering disebar luas kepada orang awam dengan mengalakkan mereka mencuci tangan dengan lebih kerap dan mengurangkan perjalanan agar tidak membebankan penguat kuasa kesihatan.

-astroawani

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Hindu Sangam (MHS) menasihati penganut yang menghadiri sambutan keagamaan Masi Magam di Teluk Bahang, Pulau Pinang pada Jumaat lalu untuk menjalani pemeriksaan kesihatan bagi mencegah penularan wabak COVID-19.

Presidennya, Datuk RS Mohan Shan berkata, meskipun setakat ini belum ada penganut yang menghadiri upacara itu disahkan positif wabak itu, namun mereka dinasihati untuk berbuat demikian sebagai langkah pencegahan awal.

“Sesungguhnya tindakan itu bukan untuk mencetuskan panik, namun adalah baik untuk melakukan pemeriksaan secara sukarela terutamanya mereka yang mempunyai gejala-gejala jangkitan wabak tersebut,” katanya ketika dihubungi Astro AWANI.

Jumaat lalu, kira-kira 30,000 penganut India dilaporkan menghadiri perarakan tahunan membawa patung Dewi Sri Singamuga Kaliamman ke laut.

Penganut Hindu yang menyertai upacara itu kemudian akan melepaskan lampu pelita berwarna-warni ke laut sebagai pelengkap acara ritual tahunan itu.

Menurut kepercayaan agama Hindu, Maasi bermaksud bulan mengikut kalendar Tamil manakala Magam pula adalah salah satu bintang daripada 27 bintang dalam sistem astrologi Hindu.

Perayaan yang diadakan untuk mendapat restu daripada Dewi yang dipercayai menjaga kawasan laut itu selalunya jatuh di antara bulan Febuari dan Mac.

Mengulas lanjut, Mohan Shan berkata, sebagai langkah segera, MHS telah mengeluarkan notis pemberitahuan kepada kira-kira 2,000 kuil berdaftar di seluruh Malaysia supaya menghindari daripada mengadakan sebarang sambutan keagamaan secara besar-besaran, buat masa ini sehingga notis sususlan.

Pun begitu katanya, upacara sembahyang yang diadakan di kuil pada setiap hari masih boleh diteruskan.

“Cuma saya sarankan supaya pengurusan kuil dapat menyediakan cecair pembasmi kuman dan memeriksa suhu badan di pintu masuk.

“Perkara ini bukan untuk menyusahkan mana-mana pihak sebaliknya adalah untuk kesejahteraan semua orang,” jelasnya.

-astroawani

Malaysia’s medical specialists are strongly urging the government to consider the implementation of a nationwide lockdown after the country saw a sudden spike of 190 Co-vid19 cases yesterday (15th February), bringing the tally to a worrying 428.

This rapid rise that is said to be linked to a mass religious gathering of over 14,500 at Masjid Jamek Sri Petaling has made Malaysia the worst-hit Southeast Asian country to date and six of our medical specialists (Dr Teoh Boon Wei, Dr Asha Prerna, Dr Devindran Manoharan, Dr Sivaneswaran Annandan, Dr Kumar Neeraj, and Dr Komella Prakasam) are calling on the government with urgency to put the entire nation under a lockdown now before things start spiraling out of control.

“My medical colleagues and I have been engrossed with the development of the Covid-19 pandemic… I am sure you are assisted by eminent members of the medical fraternity, including ID (infectious disease) physicians, intensivists, virologists and epidemiologists. But, I wonder if the authorities have considered a lockdown?,” said one of the experienced doctors in the joint statement.

According to the advice of the medical practitioners, not only would a lockdown allow carriers of the deadly virus to be easily isolated and identified, it would also minimize the disease’s rapid spreading.

This could be the only way since it seems as though citizens are still taking the virus too lightly: “the advice for social distancing has obviously fallen on deaf ears, as I see people going about their daily lives as if there is no threat at all.”

“I do consider the implication of such measures, but we do not want to be too late, like other countries, which are fighting a losing battle now. Every day matters,” said the statement, addressed to current Health director-general, Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

“If a lockdown is imposed, the many carriers in the community now will surface when they develop symptoms, while at the same time, they do not infect others. I understand the impact on social order and the economy (this would entail) but if it blows out, we will be dealing with a worse outcome”.

We cannot wait any longer before things get worse than they already are. The government needs to take action now before our entire nation suffers.

-worldofbuzz

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