Cap of 5 people for social gatherings and household visits; Lawrence Wong warns of possibility of another circuit breaker

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Singapore — Octets out, quintets in. Social gatherings will be limited to five people, no more groups of eight.

New restrictions are coming into place from May 8 to May 30 to curb the Covid-19 spike in Singapore.

The new restrictions will take Singapore back to Phase 2 of its reopening, said Education Minister Lawrence Wong at a press conference on Tuesday (May 4).

But it will not be a circuit breaker, he stressed.

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Singaporeans may experience a spot of deja vu, though.

More people will have to work from home. Not more than 50 per cent of the staff able to work from home can be at the office at any time, down from 75 per cent now.

Higher-risk settings such as gyms will be shut and size limits on large events will also be imposed from May 8.

The Ministry of Health said indoor gymnasiums and fitness studios have to close as “these are small enclosed spaces where people are frequently unmasked while exercising, and in close proximity with many other unmasked people”.

Organised outdoor exercise programmes and classes may continue, subject to a class size of 30, it added.

The authorities will take even more stringent measures should new unlinked cases and large clusters continue to emerge, said Mr Wong.

If the number of unlinked cases continues to increase, there may be the possibility of another circuit breaker,  he cautioned.

According to the new restrictions, wedding solemnisations of up to 250 attendees – including the couple, but excluding the solemniser and vendors – may proceed, with guests split into zones of 50. But pre-event testing will be required for the wedding couple in gatherings of more than 50 people, a Straits Times online article reported.

Similarly, wedding receptions with up to 250 guests may continue in zones or time slots of up to 50 guests each. But all receptions involving more than 50 attendees will have to implement pre-event testing for all attendees, given the higher risks involved.

“If the community cases situation does not improve, we will consider taking further actions on these higher-risk settings and activities,” MOH said in a statement. /TISGFollow us on Social Media

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