SINGAPORE - MPs no longer have to sit in a split-team arrangement in Chamber and can take breaks together in one room as Parliament eases Covid-19 safe management measures.
On Monday, they followed a revised seating plan.
Speaking at the start of the sitting, Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin said Parliament has been adjusting its measures even as it continues to prioritise the safeguarding of members' health and well-being.
"But even as we further ease the measures in Parliament, we will persist with a certain level of vigilance," he said, adding that members must still take a self-administered antigen rapid test before going to Parliament House on sitting days.
Meanwhile, seats in the Speakers' Gallery will continue to be set aside for members who are close contacts of Covid-19 cases but have tested negative for the disease.
Parliament will also monitor public health advisories and make adjustments according to the prevailing situation, he added.
Parliament's Covid-19 measures had been in place since early 2020, but were progressively eased as Singapore streamlined its safe distancing measures.
Mr Tan said: "Your efforts have allowed us to carry on with our duties as parliamentarians during a critical time for Singapore, and have also facilitated our quick return to business as usual."
Monday's new arrangement sees deputy prime ministers Lawrence Wong and Heng Swee Keat seated on Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's right and left respectively. They are seated in the section to the right of the Speaker.
Senior Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam is seated beside DPM Wong, while Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean is next to DPM Heng.
Leader of the Opposition and Workers' Party chief Pritam Singh retains his seat on the left of the Speaker, directly opposite PM Lee. He is flanked by MPs Liang Eng Hwa and Foo Mee Har.
The latest seating plan can be found here.