What's News: October 08, 2015

Sub-Saharan migrants being transported to an Italian Navy ship in the southern Mediterranean Sea last month.
Sub-Saharan migrants being transported to an Italian Navy ship in the southern Mediterranean Sea last month.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY


Supermarts pull APP products

Major supermarket chains such as NTUC FairPrice, Sheng Siong and Prime have pulled Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) products from their shelves, and Dairy Farm group has stopped replenishing APP stock.

The Singapore Environment Council also suspended the green label of Universal Sovereign Trading, APP's distributor here.


Hepatitis C infections in SGH

At least five out of 19 kidney transplant patients have died at the Singapore General Hospital in the last six months, possibly because of hepatitis C.

The liver infection is most severe in people with weakened immunity and the kidney patients were on drugs to suppress their immune systems.


Najib may lose rural Malay vote

Malaysian Premier and Umno president Najib Razak could lose the crucial rural Malay vote after a rare rebuke by the country's nine royal rulers on Tuesday. While the sultans play largely ceremonial roles, they still wield considerable influence among Malays. But Datuk Seri Najib faces no credible challenge to his leadership, say observers.


Europe starts military operation against human traffickers

Europe kicked off a military operation yesterday, allowing warships to board, search, seize and divert vessels suspected of being used for human trafficking. But there are concerns that Operation Sophia, the second phase of a European Union operation to tackle the network of smugglers bringing migrants into Europe, will have its limits as it cannot enter Libyan waters, and will have to deal with a massive problem that has seen more than half a million make the voyage to Europe. 


Reform arts regulation

Singapore's arts regulation regime is in need of reform, writes deputy Life editor Clarissa Oon. She hopes major arts institutions will be exempt from licensing requirements, and for greater transparency when controversial decisions are made to censor. 


New Singapore River Walk

A new Singapore River Walk is a 2.8km ramble from Collyer Quay to Robertson Quay, covering historic buildings, places of worship and bridges. It replaces a decade-old heritage trail and was refurbished for $227,000, with new maps and historical markers along the way.


Jesuit priest to helm SJI

The new principal of Singapore's oldest Catholic mission school, St Joseph's Institution, is Reverend Father Dr Adrian Augustus Danker, 50, a Jesuit priest and old boy of SJI.

He is among the 21 principals newly appointed by the Ministry of Education. 


Rail project enters new phase

Singapore and Malaysia have issued a request for information (RFI) in the next stage of the high speed rail project to connect the two countries. The RFI from parties with the expertise for the project is to gauge interest. 


Asia currencies regain ground

A sharp rise in oil prices and fading chances of an interest rate hike this year have helped heavily battered energy-driven Asian currencies regain ground against the greenback and Singdollar.

A softening US dollar also helped lift gold to a seven-week high yesterday.


Refreshed and raring to go

Injury and illness are an athlete's biggest bane. But in the case of tennis star Petra Kvitova, who suffered from mononucleosis earlier this year, she learnt valuable lessons during her "downtime".

The newfound mental focus has led her to major breakthroughs: she retained a WTA title for the first time, reached the US Open quarter- finals and finally beat world No. 1 Serena Williams. And she is flying high in qualification for the WTA Finals in Singapore. 



Paris-inspired jazz album

Eugene Pao, Hong Kong's most prominent jazz guitarist, was in Paris performing gigs with Singaporean jazz maestro Jeremy Monteiro when the pair decided to record songs inspired by the beauty of the French city. The album, To Paris With Love, will be launched with a show at Victoria Concert Hall on Oct 16. 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 08, 2015, with the headline 'What'sNews'. Print Edition | Subscribe