Former Energy Minister, Cesar Abi Khalil, was photographed celebrating the birthday of Free Patriotic Movement-affiliated pharmacist Elie Abou Jawde with a large smile of amusement.
The issue wasn’t the politician celebrating at a time that people are barely able to survive, dying in gas station queues and at hospital doors, and unable to secure baby milk and medicines.
It was actually the birthday cake on the table in front of him that had a cake topper deemed offensive. The topper makes fun of the fact that Lebanese pharmacies are suffering a shortage of medicine.
The FPM politician and affiliated members in the event somehow deemed it funny to make the painful shortage of meds a topic of joke and birthday celebration, ridiculing as such the ongoing people’s pain for their own humor and indulgence.
People in Lebanon have been enduring humiliation from the lack of meds, among other shortages, as they run from a pharmacy to another desperate for much-needed meds for the suffering of their loved ones.
Deemed offensive, the picture went viral, sparking outrage and receiving countless disapproving comments.
Commenting under Thawra Map’s Instagram post, someone took a jab at the former Energy Minister, pointing to the shortage of electricity, which the FPM’s minister and his party are deemed responsible for.
The crisis of electricity has been dragging for over a decade and keeps expanding with more rationing and cuts.
“This is unbelievable,” someone else commented on the picture as if it wasn’t enough that Lebanon is suffering a shortage of essential meds for these FPM-affiliated individuals to use it for comedic purposes.
Sharing the image on Twitter, a Lebanese by the name of Hussein Banjak deemed it “not strange,” blaming the leader of the FPM (Gebran Bassil) for “closing the doors to solutions and dancing on the shame, pain, and despair, and all he cares about is begging for votes to become president.”
As the post continues to go viral, some are calling it “the image of corruption” and tagging #الدوا_مقطوع, which emphasizes the shortage of meds as the cake’s topper indicates.