Coronavirus: Long queues at markets on Sunday; over 240 fined for flouting safe distancing rules, says Masagos

There were long queues at several markets again.
There were long queues at several markets again.PHOTO: MASAGOS ZULKIFLI/FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - Around 240 people were each fined $300 for not complying with safe distancing measures on Sunday (April 19), while 120 copped $300 penalties for not wearing masks outside their homes.

The numbers were up from Saturday, when about 200 people were fined for flouting safe distancing rules and 80 or for not wearing a mask outside.

Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli noted on Sunday that more than 10 people will be fined $1,000 each for repeated breaches of safe distancing measures, including not wearing a mask in public.

He said there were long queues at several markets again this weekend. "At 8am this morning, for instance, there were around 200 people queueing at Geylang Serai Market, and the average waiting time to get into the market was at least 30 minutes," he said.

"Meanwhile, at Tekka Market there was no queue, and at 505 Jurong West, the queue was short and fast-moving and it took less than 10 minutes to get into the market."

Mr Masagos said he was concerned because popular markets continue to be places where people gather over a prolonged period and old habits die hard.

"If we let our guard down a moment, it is possible it could result in another Covid-19 infection cluster," he added, acknowledging that people do need to get food.

"It is very important that we all do our best to minimise crowding by visiting during off-peak hours, on weekdays, or go to less popular markets."