SINGAPORE — The Singapore Armed Forces will defer all operationally-ready national servicemen (NSmen) activities – such as in-camp training (ICT) and the Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) – until 4 May.
In a media release on Friday (3 April), the Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said that the deferment is part of additional measures to safeguard the defence of Singapore, while keeping servicemen safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Besides the deferment of NSmen activities, SAF will require servicemen performing critical functions to stay in their camps and bases before and during operational duty, to reduce the risk of infection in these critical operation units.
The critical functions include island defence, protection of key installations, maritime security, air defence and counter-terrorism operations.
Other SAF units, including training schools such as Officer Cadet School, Specialist Cadet School, and Basic Military Training Centre, will continue operating and training with enhanced measures, such as training in smaller groups.
Where feasible, servicemen in administrative roles will work from their homes.
SAF assistance in contact tracing
These latest measures follow the Singapore government’s announcement of enhanced social distancing measures on Friday to curb the spread of COVID-19, such as the closing of schools and most workplaces.
Meanwhile, The Straits Times reported than SAF and Mindef have started providing assistance in COVID-19 contact tracing and calling of stay-home notice holders.
About 1,300 servicemen – including defence executive officers, regulars, and SAF Volunteer Corps volunteers – are involved in the operations at Mandai Hill Camp, coordinated by SAF's 6th Singapore Division headquarters.
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