WORLD number 1 keirin rider Azizulhasni Awang yesterday added his voice to the calls by the Health Ministry for barber shops to remain shut during the Movement Control Period (MCO) as the world battles the Covid 19 pandemic.
Complete with his own edit of a troll graphic of a traffic police officer apparently stopping Vin Diesel with the bald actor apparently stating he is going for a haircut, Azizulhasni edited out Diesel to be replaced by his own bald image.
“To the people of Malaysia, although the government has recently announced that barbers would be given permission to operate again, my advice to you is to just remain patient for a while. Even if your hair grows a bit longer, for the moment it does not matter. You can sport the John Travolta look,’ Azizulhasni wrote.
“The Covid 19 virus is still out there and we must remember the vaccine for it is yet to be discovered. So, don’t forget to observe social distancing and when at the barber, make sure that the equipment is properly cleaned and sanitised. There is a possibility that you might encounter Covid 19 carriers at the barber shops.
“I am only concerned about all of you, as I myself do not go to the barber. But if you all feel like going to the barber, that is your choice,” said Azizulhasni.
The government has made some rather confusing statements with the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) on Friday announced barber shops and eight other sectors were to have their MCO lifted and those who wanted to operate under the set guidelines and standard operating procedures could register online at the MITI website from 9am today.
However, the decision fell foul on the Health Ministry’s efforts to flatten the curve of the pandemic and its director general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah immediately advised barber shops to remain shut.
Several other controversies sprang up over the decision, highlighted by Seberang Jaya assemblyman Dr Afif Bahardin’s tweet in defence of Azmin on Saturday, in which among the justifications for barber shops to resume operations was the ill-conceived fact that haircuts helped lower blood pressure.
The Selangor and Federal Territories Indian Barbers Association yesterday issued a statement that their members – usually operators of the most popular form of barber shops – would remain shut due to the high risks involved, and would only reopen when the Health Ministry determines it is safe to do so.
Senior Minister (Defence) Ismail Sabri Yaakob in his public address yesterday, stated the lifting of the MCO on barbers were only for those in green zones which had been clear of Covid 19 cases, while those in the red zones would remain shut.
This too received criticism, as netizens debated that this would cause a rush of people from the red zones into the barber shops in the green zones.
In any case, Azizulhasni’s advice seems rather more plain, justified and acceptable at this moment.