Here are today’s top trending stories in case you missed them.
Come mid-2014, there will be free WiFi at 28 MRT stations in Singapore
Come mid-2014, the city-state’s Land Transport Authority (LTA) will implement a trial for free WiFi at 28 Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) stations for commuters to take advantage of. The wireless broadband initiative started by Infocomm Authority of Singapore, Wireless@SG, will be made available at “all the North East Line platforms and 12 other stations with high commuter usage”. The 12 stations are Jurong East, Raffles East, City Hall, Dhoby Ghaut, Bishan, Serangoon, Buona Vista, Outram Park, Paya Lebar, Orchard, Choa Chu Kang and Harbourfront.
Singapore sets basic wage of S$1,000 for cleaners
Singapore’s government has moved to set an entry-level minimum wage of S$1,000 for its cleaners. Deputy Prime and Finance minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam announced this in a speech at a best sourcing symposium, saying it will mandate an up-to-20 per cent increment in the entry-level wages for cleaners. DPM Tharman noted that the 55,000 cleaners in the country’s resident workforce earn a median gross wage of $850 per month on average.
COE premiums increase for most categories
The Certificate of Entitlement (COE) premiums have increased for most vehicles in Singapore. The latest COE bidding results showed that the premium for big cars (those above 1600cc), has increased to S$78,700. It was $75,700 in the earlier bidding results, which were released on 18 December. The COE premium for goods vehicles and buses is now set at S$48,889 instead of S$48,001. Those purchasing vehicles under the open category now need to pay S$79,000 instead of S$77,501. For motorcycles, the premium is currently set at S$1,989 as compared to S$1,812 previously.
Former Miss Venezuela shot dead in front of daughter
Gunmen have killed a former Miss Venezuela and her British-born partner in front of their young daughter during a botched robbery. Monica Spear, a 29-year-old soap opera star, and Thomas Henry Berry, 39, were killed during an attack after their car broke down on a highway in northwestern Venezuela.
New York cops among 106 accused over 9/11 fraud
Former New York police officers and firefighters were among 106 people indicted over a "massive fraud" worth hundreds of millions of dollars, some in connection with the September 11 attacks. The accused allegedly collected tens of thousands of dollars a year in Social Security disability benefits -- funded by taxpayers -- by claiming they were completely incapacitated by serious psychiatric disorders and other ailments. But, according to court documents, they were in fact living normal lives -- one of the accused flew a helicopter, while another played blackjack in Las Vegas.