Malaysians fed up with typically filthy toilets

KUALA LUMPUR - "Yuck" is the word you often hear from those who have to use public toilets.

Senior bank executive Josephine Tong, 24, said the dirtiest toilets were those at coffee shops.

"Many of them are wet and they smell bad," she said.

Credit analyst Adrian Ng, 25, said flooded toilets at LRT stations were a big turn-off.

"If I'm not careful, my shoes would get wet," he said.

Ng who studied at the University of Bristol for four years claimed he had never encountered a dirty toilet in Britain.

"You can't even find a speck of dirt in any of them," said Ng.

A bank manager who only wanted to be known as Cheong, 53, said he was saddened by the state of toilets here.

"Most of the toilets at bus stations or recreational parks do not work properly. You can't even flush.

"The sinks do not work and cubicles are vandalised," he said.

He hoped to see automated toilets in Malaysia in the future.

"When I was in Japan for vacation, I noticed the toilets there do not have janitors on duty yet they remain clean the whole day," Cheong claimed.

He wondered why Malaysians could take good care of their toilets at home yet have a complete disregard for hygiene when using public toilets.

Dr Tiun Ling Ta, 59, an associate professor at Universiti Sains Malaysia, attributed this to a society that lacked respect for cleanliness in general.

"The attitude is that someone else is going to wash it anyway, so why should I go to lengths to keep it clean?" he said.

Dr Tiun's concern was that the Malaysians' way in maintaining public hygiene was not going to change any time soon unless there were harsh penalties imposed on offenders.

"If vandals or litterbugs are given a heavy fine, I believe it will be an effective way to keep Malaysia clean," he said.