Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announces on April 21, Tuesday that Circuit Breaker will be extended until June 1. The declaration for another four weeks is due to more cases for COVID-19 being determined. Along with the extension is an implementation of more strict measures such as closing more workplaces.
PM Lee, in his address to the nation, articulated that the goal is to bring down the number of affected cases in the community. Also, he added that it aims to detect and contain as early as possible any leakage that occurs from any worker dormitories to the broader community. He mentioned, “To achieve these two objectives, we must all hunker down and press on with our tight circuit breaker measures.”
Part of the tighter measures discussed during the conference is closing of workplaces and imposing entry restrictions on hotspots such as markets. Businesses who are allowed to operate will be cut down to the essential services.
“This will reduce further the number of workers keeping essential services going, and minimize the risks of transmission among the workers,” PM Lee explained.
He emphasizes that people should only go out as much as possible only for very important needs such as buying foods or necessities. “If you need to go out, put on a mask, and only one person from every household should be away from home at any one time,” He said.
In his speech, he also acknowledged that it might hard for others to deal with the extension. The decision to extend the circuit breaker and tightening the measures is mainly to prioritize the safety of citizens. “Many will be disappointed by the extension of the circuit breaker, especially our business and workers, who are hurting greatly,” said Mr Lee. “But I hope you understand that this short-term pain is to stamp out the virus, protect the health and safety of our loved ones, and allow us to revive our economy.”
He assures that Covid-19 cases situation is closely being monitored, “Provided we have brought the community numbers down, we can make further adjustments and consider easing some measures,” he said.
“I know this has not been an easy time for everyone. We are making progress, but we have not yet succeeded, by a long way. The results show that the circuit breaker is working. Now we all need to do a little bit more, make the best use of the next two weeks of the tightened circuit breaker, and the four weeks of the extension beyond that,” he added.
On how Singapore is taking the hit in terms of the health of its people and the economy, he stressed that the country needs to take things one step at a time “I ask for your support and cooperation. I ask for your trust and your confidence. Let us go all out to beat the virus, and break the chain of transmission. We will overcome this together.”