When we lose sight of the real issue

IT’S just disappointing how easily we get sidelined when certain issues of public importance crop up.

The latest is the incident involving a banana leaf restaurant whose workers were caught on video washing plates in murky water.

When the video went viral on May 29, hordes of people took to social media to condemn the culprit – Raj Banana Leaf in Bangsar.

It was just as well because those who watched the video must have felt nauseated and disgusted to the core. It was only normal to have reacted with strong words and cries for stern action.

The next day, Kuala Lumpur City Hall sealed the restaurant until further notice – swift action indeed and as would be expected of the authorities.

But what transpired soon after that on social media was just unfathomable.

Instead of demanding that the authorities get tough with restaurant operators as there surely are many more culprits, netizens got distracted by something else.

Few seemed interested in the bigger issue of the need for cleanliness and prompt action. What they wanted to know was who the owners of Raj Banana Leaf were.

What piqued their interest was badminton star Datuk Lee Chong Wei was assumed to be a co-owner and director based on checks on the Companies Commission of Malaysia website.

Although this was denied by Lee and soon after, by Raj Banana Leaf, many remained doubtful and went on with their rants.

While it is warranted to find out who the owners are, it’s sad that most of us missed the forest for the trees.

In a day or two, the excitement over who the owner is will probably die down, and sadly, so will the push to make restaurants and the authorities do the right thing.

Just like we fold the banana leaf after eating, so will this episode fold until the next issue crops up.

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