NTUC FairPrice on Mon (10 Feb) said that it will be working with the police to decide “the necessary actions” to be taken regarding a “prank” video referring to the novel coronavirus outbreak, which was filmed in one of its outlets.
The supermarket in a statement yesterday said that while the video creators “have since made a public apology”, in addition to sharing that they had “removed the items from the shelves and paid for them”, it has decided to continue working with the authorities on the case as the video “has caused unnecessary public alarm”.
NTUC FairPrice also advised the public to “refrain from forwarding this video to avoid any further public distress”.
The video, captioned as “how to spread Wuhan”, was first published on Instagram Stories yesterday, and was then reposted to Twitter the same day. The video has since been deleted from Twitter.
In the video, a young man was seen taking a swig out of beverages at an NTUC FairPrice supermarket before placing the bottles back on the shelf.
Another man, who was believed to have been the one recording the prank, was heard asking the man about the taste of the drink.
Police yesterday had earlier urged the public to supply information on the incident recorded in the video.
“Anyone with information (about) this incident can provide it to the police via the i-Witness portal. All information will be kept strictly confidential,” said Police.
Netizens call for punishment to curb copycat behaviour relating to prank video, sceptical of video creators’ claim regarding compensation
Many netizens have chided the video creators for making such a prank video in the midst of the novel coronavirus outbreak, which has taken the lives of over 1,000 people in China to date.
Going beyond a silly prank, the video creators’ actions at NTUC FairPrice, according to netizens, point to a criminal nature — as seen in the US where such acts are considered a felony — and should be punished severely due to the public health hazard it poses:
Netizens have also encouraged punishment against the two men to deter any potential copycats:
There were also netizens who doubted the video creators’ claim that they have removed the tainted items from the shelf and have paid NTUC FairPrice for the items, and have urged the supermarket to release the relevant CCTV footage to the public: