These two influencers are under fire and facing serious criticism from the online community after one of them painted face mask on her face while the other filmed the whole ordeal. The duo is getting heat for taking COVID SOPs lightly and provoking others to show the same reckless behavior.
Josh Paler Lin and Leia Se, two influencers had their passports seized after one filmed another in a supermarket with a mask painted on her face instead of wearing one. The duo filmed a video at a store in Bali where they wandered the aisles and Leia drew a mask on her face to avoid being pointed out by the onlookers.
She painted the mask on her face in order to avoid being called out by the bystanders, however, the action backfired badly and the influencer was heavily criticized for taking the virus crisis lightly and not following the SOPs.
As the video got viral on social media, the Indonesian immigration later confirmed that their passports had been seized and their deportation from the country is under consideration.
Reportedly, Josh is a Taiwanese national, and Leia is a Russian.
I Putu Surya Dharma, a spokesperson from the regional office for the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, said last week that Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) officers would be questioning the influencers.
According to Coconuts Bali, he commented: ‘After that they will be examined together with Immigration to take the decision on whether or not to deport them.’
Dewa Nyoman Rai Dharmadi, the head of Bali Civil Service Police, said the agency planned to issue a letter that recommended deportation as Josh and Leia’s actions violated the expected behaviour.
He commented: ‘They are not only violating, but deliberately provoking in public, so it’s only proper to sanction them more severely, not just with a fine but also deportation.’
Foreign nationals are subject to a fine of IDR1 million (US$68.76) the first time they are caught without masks, according to Bali’s mandatory mask rule, while a second violation may subject them to deportation.
As the dire consequences of their reckless actions came to light, the two influencers released an apology video in which they gave an explanation and told the public that their intention was never to disrespect the SOPs or to provoke others to be reckless like them, but to ‘entertain people’.
Josh commented: ‘I did not realise that what I did could… raise a lot of concerns. Once again we want to apologise for what we did and we promise not to do it again.’
The influencer went on to encourage those in Indonesia and Bali to ‘always wear a mask for our own safety and health [and] so we can help Bali to gain its tourism again.’
After the criticism and backlash, the influencers have reportedly made their accounts private briefly and made them public again after relating an apology.