Singaporeans laud Japanese man spotted picking up litter in Tiong Bahru

Japanese man known as Toshi spotted picking litter in Tiong Bahru. Photo: Ivan Choong/fb
Japanese man known as Toshi spotted picking litter in Tiong Bahru. Photo: Ivan Choong/fb

A “hero we don’t deserve”? We’ll let you be the judge. Meet Toshi, a Japanese national who’s quickly becoming a bit of a minor celebrity after being spotted picking up litter along a roadside in Tiong Bahru yesterday.

According to Singaporean Ivan Choong, catching sight of the man, still in his work clothes, clearing litter from the roadside was surprising enough that he had to not only snap a pic, but ask him what prompted the impromptu cleanup campaign.

Turns out, even though he’d only been in the country for about two months — and living in an area hotel — Toshi had kind of fallen in love with Singapore’s well-kempt vibes. “I like this place. Very green. Very clean. So I just help to pick up the litter,” he told Choong.

Choong’s photos documenting the evening encounter were posted to his Facebook account at about 7:40pm and have since been shared more than 3,000 times.

Choong then wrote: “Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Toshi. The hero we don’t deserve.”

Our hero won’t be with us all that much longer, by the way. He’s scheduled to head back to Japan next week. So if you happen to catch a glimpse of a middle-aged Japanese man making the city cleaner all on his own, nows the time to roll down your window and shout a little encouragement.

Netizens lauded and thanked Toshi for his kind and selfless act:

A comment taken from Ivan Choong's Facebook post.

A comment taken from Ivan Choong's Facebook post.

A comment taken from Ivan Choong's Facebook post.

A comment taken from Ivan Choong's Facebook post.

Related stories:

With over 7,000 cases from 2016-2018, high-rise littering remains a problem in Singapore

Straws are going away, but Singapore’s hidden beaches remain decimated by plastic waste


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