LETTERS: Just One Day After the International Day of Happiness on March 20, i Received a Message From An Acquaintance From Ireland. the Message Ended with Warm Regards to Me Staying Safe and Healthy in Malaysia.
Her concern touched me amid the predicament in the country now since the imposition of the Movement Control Order (MCO). We don’t have any magic bullet for the current situation but let us look at silver linings instead.
Firstly, solidarity among people is strong. Ever since the outbreak of Covid-19, people are closer in heart to fight against this hardship. The MCO is the best time for family members to spend time together.
Reports of the beautiful side of humanity from all over the globe are flooding social media. In the middle of the storm created by Covid-19, people are working out online, clapping hands to encourage one another, singing to boost the depressing atmosphere.
Secondly, working from home brings work productivity to another level. Both employers and employees enter a parallel working plan to ensure that everyone adheres to their respective work load and scheduling.
The MCO opens up a space for most of us to train ourselves in diversifying our role – ensuring that daily chores are accomplished, meals are well-prepared, families are taken care of while keeping all work tasks on the right track.
Also, this is the golden time to show our children the daily work pattern of their parents and expose them to work life.
Thirdly, society is showing more compassion. Civil society is setting up digital platforms to support funds for the Malaysian healthcare system.
These unsung heroes are lending a helping hand to provide more medical aid to our national hospitals especially front liners who are in need of masks, ventilators, sanitisers, as well as other supplies.
Fourth, the Earth just hit the reset button with most places in the world reporting large-scale reduction of environmental pollution.
China, which has an enormous export market, has shown significant reduction in air pollution as a result of the economic disruption due to the coronavirus.
According to a study by Stanford University, the drastic measures enforced by the Chinese government during the outbreak have slashed air pollution and potentially saved tens of thousands of living things.
Due to the significant drop in tourism sector, Venice’s Grand Canal is the clearest in 60 years and dolphins are spotted swimming in the waterway.
Looking at Malaysia since the MCO has been imposed, less carbon emission and sound pollution from traffic and industries are highly likely to benefit the environment pollution index when the country is restricting public movement.
Lastly, food delivery riders from companies such as Grab Food, Food Panda, Dahmakan and LalaMove are seeing more business when options for dining out are constrained.
Meanwhile, online platforms are diversifying from food and beverage services to other services such as daily necessities products.
The gig economy can be further empowered with the deployment of new innovation in phone applications and social media.
Emergence of more e-commerce features in market such as Beep Delivery that establish partnership with local logistic providers to help F&B businesses to run their own food delivery can further enhance the ecosystem within the gig economy.
The government is doing its bit to keep the nation from minimum susceptibility of fear and working hard against the clock, struggling to flatten the curve of the Covid-1.
We, as Malaysian, are urged to stay as home and fulfil our role, ensuring all obligations are accomplished proficiently.
MCO is undoubtfully a precious period to be remembered in history. Make it a memorable one. Stay at home, and be safe.
IRIS NG PEI YI
Petaling Jaya, Selangor