Singapore reports 191 new COVID-19 cases, tally reaches 42,623

Gurdip Singh

Singapore, Jun 24 (PTI) Singapore on Wednesday reported 191 new coronavirus infections, including seven community cases, taking the tally to 42,623, the health ministry said.

Of the seven community, two are Singapore citizens or permanent residents (foreigners) and five are foreigners on work passes.

Most of the new cases are foreign workers living in dormitories, the ministry said.

Meanwhile, contingency plans have been made to mitigate the spread of the virus during the general elections to be held on July 10, the Channel News Asia reported.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday announced snap general elections to allow a fresh five-year mandate to a new government to take important decisions to revive the city-state’s economy battered by the coronavirus pandemic.

President Halimah binte Yacob dissolved Parliament on the prime minister's advice, setting the stage for the general election in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic. The nomination day has been set for June 30.

Prime Minister Lee on Tuesday said he is satisfied that voters can vote safely, and that political parties will be able to campaign effectively as Singapore manages the control of the coronavirus spread.

No physical rallies will be allowed during the campaigning period, as gatherings of more than five people are not allowed in Phase 2 of Singapore's post-'circuit breaker' reopening.

Instead, constituency political broadcasts will be aired on television. These are on top of the two-party political broadcasts that will be aired on 19 TV and radio channels.

Political parties doing walkabouts and door-to-door campaigning will also have to cap their groups at five people. They will also have to take other precautions such as wearing masks and avoiding physical contact.

On the polling day, there will be dedicated time-bands for seniors to vote. Voters will have to wear gloves before entering the polling booths.

There will be 1,100 polling stations, up from 880, with the number of voters expected at each station to be reduced from an average of 3,000 to 2,400 people. PTI GS SCY SCY