Thanks Coldplay but only Malaysians can fix our rivers

Somehow it only seems ‘sexy’ when a foreigner helps us.

So it was earlier this week when it was announced that British music group Coldplay was sponsoring an Interceptor 005, a machine built by Dutch non-profit organisation The Ocean Cleanup, to help clean rivers in Malaysia. The machine is an innovative, solar-powered, floating system that removes plastic and other debris from rivers.

For the record, this would be the second Interceptor in the country. The first one, Interceptor 002, is sponsored by Westports and has been operational since 2018.

However, judging by the reaction from fellow Malaysians, it seems the good work by Westports, the Selangor government and Landasan Lumayan Sdn Bhd (LLSB) which has been tasked to transform Klang River into the Selangor Maritime Gateway, has gone largely unnoticed.

Or perhaps, as a friend pointed out, it is more of Malaysians preferring to celebrate when ‘foreigners’ help us.

This is sad as the work done by LLSB and the Selangor government via Menteri Besar Incorporated (MBI), has produced amazing results.

My colleague Amar Qastellani Tajuddin and I had the opportunity to take a boat ride along the Klang River last year and were astonished by the changes and how relatively clean it was.

Seeing the wildlife return gave hope that Selangor Maritime Gateway can be a game-changer.

In case you did not know, Selangor Maritime Gateway is supposed to clean the Klang River and rehabilitate it.

More importantly, it is to sustainably rejuvenate the 35,612 hectares along the river ecosystem to make it a source of income for the state as well as provide better quality river water.

Hopefully more and more non-governmental organisations and corporations can step forward to help us clean Malaysian rivers.

But we still need to educate the public on how to dispose of their trash. Until we become responsible citizens, there is no point celebrating having one, two, three or more Interceptors.

Let us instead rejoice when there is no need for one as that means we have learnt not to throw rubbish into rivers.

Anyway, today is the 382nd day since the start of the original Movement Control Order and this is the 42nd weekly edition of ‘The MCO Diaries’.


On Monday, Malaysia recorded fewer than 1,000 new cases with only 941 infections – the lowest this year.

The last time we had fewer than 1,000 cases was on Dec 9 (959). While many expected more three-digit numbers, it did not happen – for now at least.

Overall, we have had 8,529 new cases in the last seven days, making it 347,972 Covid-19 infections. The good news is that the seven-day total was down by 872 from the corresponding week and we continue to have fewer and fewer cases each week.

Meanwhile, another 8,517 patients were given the all-clear, meaning the number of recoveries is 332,442 (95.54 per cent).

Sadly, there were 34 new deaths, taking fatalities to 1,283.

Worldwide, there are 130.3 million cases and nearly 2.84 million deaths.


A former colleague, Vanessa Gomes, had an interesting Facebook posting about the trials and tribulations of dealing with temperature scanners.

Dear brick-and-mortar establishments,

When setting up temperature scanners, please bear in mind that a tall person can…

Posted by Vanessa Ee-Lyn Gomes on Friday, 26 March 2021

She has a valid point. I have seen this happen a few times. Hopefully, businesses take notice.


I mentioned last week I could be a genius as I kept forgetting stuff.

This week the adventure continues. On Thursday at 12.01am, I decided to clean my WhatsApp and deleted more than 180,000 messages – this included jokes and memes from family and friends which I had accumulated from Jan 1.

I usually clean my WhatsApp two or three times a year to save space on my phone.

Unfortunately, this time, I lost some important information. It is a good thing I have not cleaned the work-related WhatsApp groups … yet.

Sadly, it was no April Fools’ Day prank.


This did not get deleted from WhatsApp!


How about trying this for Easter?


Another classic from WhatsApp. Luckily, I had saved this to my laptop.


Since it is Easter tomorrow, here is a Hank Williams masterpiece. Although known for his country and western classics, Williams also recorded countless gospel songs … and the world is better for it.

Happy Easter folks.

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