SINGAPORE- Five food and beverage (F&B) outlets have been ordered to close, while 16 other outlets and 36 individuals will be fined for breaching safe management measures.
The breaches were uncovered during stepped-up enforcement checks over the last weekend, the Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment (MSE) said in a statement on Tuesday (Dec 22).
The stepped-up surveillance will extend over the next few weeks, coinciding with the end-of-year festive period.
The statement on Tuesday said that on Dec 18, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) issued an order requiring the Cheers Up outlet at 2 Havelock Road to close for 10 days from Dec 19 to Dec 28 for allowing patrons to consume alcoholic beverages past 10.30pm on Dec 11.
When officers did a follow-up check on Dec 18, they found the outlet was still allowing patrons to consume alcoholic beverages at 11.15pm. URA issued another closure order for 20 days from Dec 29 to Jan 17 next year.
An additional four offences were committed last Saturday (Dec 19).
Another establishment, One Min Club in Orchard, also committed multiple breaches of safe management measures. These included allowing a group of seven people to be seated together at a table, a group of 11 people to be seated at another table and providing drinking games to patrons.
F&B establishments are not allowed to provide games if they are not also an amusement centre. The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) has issued an order requiring the operator to close its premises for 10 days from Dec 20.
Additionally, enforcement officers also observed patrons at Tangmen in Orchard consuming alcoholic beverages which were concealed in green tea bottles at 3.40am. STB has issued an order requiring the operator to close its premises for 10 days till Dec 28.
At Chong Qing Steamboat in Beach Road, a group of eight patrons were found intermingling at 10pm last Saturday. URA has ordered the operator to close for 10 days till Jan 1.
Finally, on Saturday, officers observed patrons at QQ in South Bridge Road consuming alcoholic beverages at 10.40pm. URA ordered the operator to close for 10 days till Jan 1.
The 16 F&B outlets will be fined for offences such as admitting and seating groups of more than five together, allowing groups to intermingle, and seating groups of patrons less than one metre apart, said the ministry.
A total of 36 individuals will also be fined for not observing safe management measures at F&B outlets. They had gathered and sat in groups of more than five and intermingled between groups, the ministry said.
"Agencies are reviewing the breaches and the appropriate enforcement actions to be taken, including temporary closure of the outlets and the issuance of fines. F&B outlets with repeated offences will face harsher penalties," MSE said.
Under the current phase two Covid-19 regulations, social gatherings in groups of more than five outside an individual's residence are not allowed.
F&B outlets are not allowed to accept bookings from groups that are larger than five, even if such groups are split across multiple tables.
Intermingling between groups is also prohibited.
"The Government will not hesitate to take strong enforcement action against operators and individuals who treat safe management measures with flagrant disregard," MSE warned.