Another correction order has been issued under the Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act (POFMA), this time by Minister for Transport Khaw Boon Wan to Facebook over posts made by two users about the alleged closure of the Woodlands MRT station.

Specifically, the posts in question stated that the Woodlands MRT station was closed to be disinfected after a suspect case of the Wuhan virus on 28 January. But the station was fully operational in actual fact.

In a statement on 28 January, the Pofma Office said that the targeted correction direction requires Facebook to carry a correction notice on the two posts which it says contains falsehoods.

The statement also urged members of the public to not speculate or spread unfounded rumours, directing them instead to the Ministry of Health (MOH) website for updates on the Wuhan virus situation in Singapore.

This follows a day after Communications and Information Minister S. Iswaran said that the government must take swift action against mistruths after several cases of falsehoods were used to amp up public anxiety over the situation.

On Monday (27 January), the MOH issued a general correction direction under POFMA against the online forum HardwareZone and its operator SPH Magazine over a post made by a user who said that someone had died from the novel coronavirus.

The post, made on 26 January, claimed that the 66-year old who had been tested positive for the virus died due to severe pneumonia from the virus.

However, SPH Magazine had already removed the post due to violation of its community standards before the direction was issued and received.

Virus update

Yesterday, the MOH confirmed two more imported cases of the virus into Singapore, bringing the total number of cases in the country up to seven.

The first is a 56-year-old Chinese national who had arrived in Singapore on 18 January. He was staying with his family in their home at Pasir Ris Cove. He went to Changi General Hospital on 25 January after developing a cough.

The other case is that of a 35-year-old Chinese national who arrived in the country on 23 January and stayed at Marina Bay Sands. He developed symptoms the next day and went to Raffles Hospital for treatment on his own

Both tested positive for the novel coronavirus infection on Tuesday night.

MOH said that all seven patients are in stable condition.

Travellers from Hubei and Hubei-issued passport holders now barred from entering

Starting noon today (29 January), the government is barring anyone who has been in Hubei over the past 14 days or have passports issued in Hubei from entering the country as a precautionary measure.

The ban applies to all land, sea and air checkpoints.

On top of that, no new visas will be issued to China nationals with Hubei-issued passports. Those with the affected passport who already have short-term and multiple visit visas will find that their visas are now invalid and will be denied visa-free transit or entry.

The government is also placing those who have travelled to Hubei within the last 14 days in quarantine. This includes Singaporeans, permanent residents and those with long-term visas like work passes.

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