Singapore's Education Minister Lawrence Wong has announced new rules to deal with COVID-19 situations. The new measures are being called Phase 2 – Heightened Alert. These new rules will be in effect from May 16 and will continue till June 13. Singapore has recorded 61,453 COVID-19 cases and 31 deaths.
Addressing the multi-ministry task force press conference on May 14, Minister Wong said that Phase-2 rules will apply across the board. "If you want to go out for anything, grocery shopping, exercise, maximum of two persons henceforth. In fact, we strongly encourage everyone to stay home as much as possible, go out only for essential reasons," Wong said.
According to new rules the current size of gatherings has been cut down from five to two. The Ministry said that it will look at the public heath situation when Phase-2 is in force and see if there is a need for new measures.
Answering a query about the chance of 'Circuit Breaker [lockdown]," Wong said that is a possibility if the situation does not improve. He expressed hope that things will improve and soon some restrictions will be eased. "We are in a stage of heightened alert. I would urge everyone to be vigilant and minimize unnecessary social interactions," said Health Minister Gan Kim Yong.
Phase -2 Rules
Between May 16 and June 13 dining-in has been banned. Even hawker centers and food courts will not be operational. But takeaway and delivery will be allowed. Employees will have to work from home and going to offices will not be allowed. Another rule to keep in mind is that only two persons can visit a household in a day. Exception to this rule are grandparents who are taking care of their grandchildren on a daily basis. However, the government has asked to vaccinate the elderly against COVID-19.
Events can have only 50 attendees without pre-event testing and 100 people with pre-event testing. Only 20 people can attend funeral services. Religious workers and all other participants also must wear their masks at all times.
Wearing mask is compulsory without any exception. Live singing and playing of wind instruments will also be suspended temporarily. Only medical and dental services will function. In other rules, museums and public libraries will operate with only 25 percent staff. Food and beverages will not be allowed to be sold in the cinema theatres, where only 50 percent audience will be allowed.