Indonesian singer/actress Bunga Citra Lestari has been accused of jeopardizing Bali’s potential reopening to tourists after she announced that she tested positive for the coronavirus, with Balinese musician Jerinx appearing to be leading the charge on social media.
Bunga, who is popularly known by her initials BCL, made headlines after she shared the news of her diagnosis via Instagram on Monday night. She followed this up with another post about being in isolation yesterday, sharing with her followers how her symptoms have mostly been mild.
While the stream of comments she received are mostly well-wishes from fellow musicians, celebrities, as well as her fans, a comment from Jerinx stood out as he accused BCL of tainting Bali’s reputation with her announcement.
“Don’t you turn Bali into a black sheep! You had a good time vacationing here, and after you’re satisfied you are proud of having COVID. The people of Bali have suffered for too long [to deal with] COVID dramas courtesy of the capital’s celebrities,” Jerinx, who is also known as JRX, commented.
Jerinx’s comment has over 15,000 likes at the time of writing, with his supporters throwing similar accusations against BCL in the comments section of her post.
Last night, BCL responded to all the hubbub and clarified that she was in Bali between May 29 and June 2. She explained that she’s been actively working in Jakarta since while observing health protocols, before finally testing positive on June 14. She said she’s been self-isolating since.
“I have never issued any statement that I was infected with COVID-19 because I went on a holiday in Bali. Please verify information wisely before issuing any statement,” BCL’s post reads.
This morning, Jerinx also took to Instagram to elaborate his argument, pointing out how BCL had shared her Bali adventures on the platform prior to her positive results and inadvertently jeopardizing Bali’s potential reopening to international tourism when she announced she was sick with COVID-19.
“Anyone who still has a brain — even without media coverage — who follows BCL’s Instagram will automatically think that BCL ‘got’ COVID in Bali, not on the moon or the North Pole,” the 43-year-old wrote.
“Is she too stupid to realize that the announcement to her 18 million followers might risk plans to reopen Bali’s tourism in July 2021?”
Unsurprisingly, this back-and-forth between the two well-known public figures are taking social media and the local news cycle by storm. Though Bali province has been recording fairly low daily cases in recent weeks, other parts of Indonesia are currently facing a new wave of COVID-19 cases.