The Worker’s Party (WP) gives its full support during this “trying period” to the multi-ministry taskforce set up by the government to consolidate efforts in containing the spread of the coronavirus outbreak in Singapore and overseas.
In a statement on its website published on Tuesday evening (28 Jan), the Party described the outbreak as “serious and concerning”, urging the public to stay vigilant and take necessary precautions to stay safe. The Party pointed out the importance of maintaining good personal hygiene practices and advised people to follow advisories issued by the Ministry of Health (MOH).
The WP said, “We have to stay united, and heed instructions given by the various ministries, especially that from the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Manpower, and the Ministry of Education.”
“Most importantly, we urge everyone to remain calm, and not to give in to fear mongering by speculating or spreading rumours online,” it added.
On Monday (27 Jan), the MOH issued a general correction direction under the Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act (POFMA) against the online forum HardwareZone and its operation SPH Magazine over a post made by a user who said claimed someone had died from the novel coronavirus.
Yesterday, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan issued a targeted correction direction under POFMA to Facebook over two posts made on the platform which the ministry says contains falsehoods claiming that the Woodlands MRT station was closed in order to be disinfection following a suspect case of the virus.
Moving on, the WP also acknowledged the efforts by those on the front-lines of Singapore’s borders, hospitals, clinics, and others who have worked tirelessly to ensure the safety of Singaporeans and that operations run smoothly.
“The Workers’ Party thanks all of them for their efforts and sacrifices, and we stand behind them in this nation-wide effort to tackle the coronavirus,” the statement noted.
WP also included links to the MOH’s website for updates on the Wuhan coronavirus, the Ministry of Manpower’s statement on precautionary measures against the virus, and the Ministry of Education’s press release on the virus.
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. MOH said that all seven patients are in stable condition.
Following the confirmation of the two latest cases, the government has stepped up measures to contain the virus. As of noon today (29 Jan), anyone who has been in Hubei over the past 14 days or has their passport issued in Hubei will be barred from entering the country.
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.