South Korean politicians have been looking to score points in an upcoming general election on April 15 by getting involved in the fight against Covid-19. Some candidates are eschewing traditional campaign methods in favour of an online approach, while others do coronavirus-related volunteer work.
TOP OF THE NEWS
To ensure that landlords pass on property tax rebates in full to their tenants, a new legislation will be introduced - the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Bill. Landlords that fail to do so could find themselves facing fines of up to $5,000.
TOP OF THE NEWS
Internet data traffic in Singapore has surged by as much as 60 per cent, according to Internet service providers, as more of the workforce log on from home amid the Covid-19 crisis. MyRepublic, ViewQwest and Singtel have all reported spikes in network traffic, while StarHub said it has seen more clients on the Net in the daytime.
China has attempted to rebrand itself as a generous giver of aid by sending medical teams and supplies to countries hit by the coronavirus. However, its soft power push has been set back by defective test kits and the recall of face masks.
The United States is missing in action (MIA) in Asia during the coronavirus crisis - to its detriment. Meanwhile China steps up to a leading role in the region, offering assistance and shaping the narrative, says associate editor Ravi Velloor.
The virtual arena, and not rallies on grassy fields, will likely be where the battle for Singaporeans' votes will be waged in the coming general election (GE). MPs said they would turn to social media, messaging apps and even real-time video streaming to reach out to voters.
For this financial year, about 940,000 Singaporean households in Housing Board flats will get double their regular GST (goods and services tax) Voucher to offset part of their utility bills. The Ministry of Finance said the households will receive a Utilities-Save rebate of up to $300, depending on the type of their flat.
Entertainment venues, which have been asked to suspend operations starting last Friday, may have to lay off workers and close for good as they face zero revenue during the shutdown. Some say they do not qualify for the higher wage subsidies offered to other sectors as part of Singapore's second wave of fiscal stimulus.
English Premier League (EPL) football teams are today almost certain to vote to delay the restart of games from the earliest May 1 date. But with the coronavirus pandemic still raging, they then need to decide if they are going to void the season, end it now or take as long as possible to finish their remaining games.
Adam Schlesinger (above), 52, an acclaimed singer who had an award-winning second career writing songs for film, theatre and television, died from complications arising from Covid-19 on Wednesday in New York. British dialect coach and actor Andrew Jack, 76, and ballet coach Wilhelm Burmann, 80, have also died after contracting the disease.
Straits Times Digital
The Big Story
National Development Minister Lawrence Wong talks about the tough decisions being taken in the fight against Covid-19, and the one thing that is paramount: The health and safety of Singaporeans. str.sg/blurb299
Helping the homeless in Singapore is a long journey where one must walk with them, say panellists in a discussion organised by The Straits Times in partnership with the Singapore Kindness Movement. str.sg/blurb300