Memes from Singapore’s ugly weekend of coronavirus panic hoarding

PHOTO: Twitter / @ikansumbat

Right before the weekend rolled through, the powers that be raised Singapore’s risk assessment of the coronavirus infection from DORSCON (Disease Outbreak Response System Condition) Yellow to DORSCON Orange

The raised status (just below Red, the most severe) simply means that the outbreak is deemed to have moderate to high public health impact. Sure, there’ll be mild disruptions on daily life like increased temperature screenings outside venues and stronger quarantine measures, but it’s not exactly calamitous enough for a strict lockdown. 

Unfortunately, a significant portion of the population saw the code orange activation as something else — a time to prepare for a nonexistent apocalypse. 

Over the weekend, various household items flew off shelves at supermarkets across the island as fear and good old kiasu-ism drove residents to hoard essential supplies like rice, instant noodles, and toilet paper (condoms too, for some reason?). Social media was replete with photos and videos of vacant shelves and long snaking queues at supermarket aisles. 

PHOTO: AsiaOne

It got to the point that politicians (including Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong) had to publicly urge Singaporeans not to hoard groceries and just stop the whole panic buying nonsense. 

Don’t panic and hoard. But if for some #bopian reason you have to, be #reasonable. These people decided that the queue...

Posted by Chuan-Jin Tan on Saturday, February 8, 2020

It really was an ugly display of paranoia, especially when you realise that some folks simply ditched their shopping baskets filled with items after getting tired of being in line for some time. 

When people attempt to panic buy & then give up due to the long queues, they simply abandon their shopping baskets. This...

Posted by Willy Tan on Friday, February 7, 2020

The kiasu shenanigans over the weekend proved worthy enough to be the butt of some Internet jokes, which we’ve kindly compiled below. Enjoy. 


PHOTO: Facebook / A Better World By Memes

NTUC FairPrice 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻

Posted by Rise of The Strawberry Nation on Sunday, February 9, 2020

现在知道国人(新加坡)为什么买避孕套了。

Posted by 新加坡华人华语网/SG Chinese Community on Sunday, February 9, 2020

Please uh people, the condoms are for another type of use leh...

Posted by Wee Chee Ong on Friday, February 7, 2020

Hoarders have small pp

Posted by A Better World By Memes on Monday, February 10, 2020

Meanwhile in KL...

Posted by Tawfik Daud on Saturday, February 8, 2020

What Singaporeans actually do for DORSCON

Posted by Sibeh Singapore on Friday, February 7, 2020

“This My Mini Mart”

Posted by Syazwanyunos DRAMA Melayu on Saturday, February 8, 2020

Forecast for next week -

Posted by All Singapore Stuff on Saturday, February 8, 2020

There is a special place in Hieronymus Bosch's vision of hell for all you coronasty hoarders! BOSCH: THE GARDEN OF...

Posted by The Projector on Sunday, February 9, 2020

Doomsday food🥘 choice of champions ✊🔥

Posted by Singaplex on Saturday, February 8, 2020

New🎉 five 5️⃣ ©️s that every singaporean🇸🇬 should aim 🎯 for!!💲💲💰🤑🤑

Posted by A Better World By Memes on Friday, February 7, 2020

By @ianttyang #sgmemes

Posted by Kiasu Memes For Singaporean Teens on Friday, February 7, 2020

Please share. Thank you very much 🙏

Posted by SG BusLeh on Friday, February 7, 2020

How Singaporeans reacted when the DORSCON alert was raised to orange.

Posted by The Royal Singapore on Sunday, February 9, 2020

ilyas@asiaone.com