The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) has announced on Tuesday (31 March) that it will introduce enhanced measures, on top of existing safe-distancing measures., to further safeguard SAF personnel’s health and maintain its units’ integrity in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The enhanced measures include reducing the scale of SAF training to smaller groups, deferring all non-operations-essential In-Camp Training (ICT), closing of its Fitness Conditioning Centres (FCC) and suspension of physical training and examinations for servicemen at FCCs, SAFRA gyms and IPT-in-the-Park locations.
These measures will take immediate effect and will be in place until 30 April 2020, and may be extended if the COVID-19 situation does not improve.
Critical functions, such as island defence, protection of key installations, maritime security and air defence operations, continue to be performed by SAF personnel round the clock. To ensure uninterrupted operations in the event of a COVID-19 infection, SAF units in these roles have been separated into cohorts. ICT for NSmen supporting these critical functions will continue.
The SAF has already introduced health precautions and safe distancing measures. Examples include health and temperature monitoring regimes, temperature screening at SAF premises and events, deferment or cancellation of large-scale events and social gatherings, wider physical spacing in workplace and common areas, and staggered mealtimes.
In regards to the suspension of Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT), the IPPT requirements for affected NSmen will be waived.
SAF states that activities critical for build-up of operational units will continue with enhanced measures in place. BMT direct enlistment exercises for full-time national servicemen will be conducted in multiple smaller batches with no guests invited.
SAF further noted that while there is no requirement at this juncture for more stringent measures such as isolating essential operational units within SAF premises, it will continue to monitor the evolving situation and may implement further measures to ensure continued operational readiness should the COVID-19 situation deteriorate.
As of yesterday noon, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has confirmed and verified an additional 35 cases of COVID-19 infection in Singapore, of which nine are imported and 26 are local cases who have no recent travel history abroad.
This makes a total of 879 cases of confirmed COVID-19 infection in Singapore.