UPDATE: Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli said the police are investigating the crowding at Robertson Quay
SINGAPORE — The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) has ordered several restaurants in Robertson Quay to stop selling takeaway alcohol, after a social media post of crowds gathering in the area went viral over the weekend.
In response to queries from Yahoo News Singapore on Monday (18 May), URA stressed that the majority of operators and individuals in the area were found to be compliant with safe distancing measures by enforcement officers.
“However, we observed that some restaurants in the area were selling takeaway alcohol to patrons, which had contributed to more individuals gathering around these premises.
“To prevent such gatherings from taking place, we have issued a written direction to these restaurants to cease the sale of takeaway alcohol with immediate effect. Any contravention of such directions is an offence and we will not hesitate to take such parties to task.”
URA also warned that enforcement action would be taken against business operators and individuals alike if they breach safe distancing measures.
In a post on his Facebook page, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli said on Monday night that the police have traced a number of the individuals who had gathered in the area. “These persons are non-Singaporeans, and are currently under police investigation.”
Masagos advised members of the public that if they see any offenders, they shouldn’t just take photos for a posting and instead, they should report through the #OneService app with specific details and photos.
On Saturday, Facebook user Lectress Pat’s post, which showed crowds congregating at Robertson Quay, was widely shared.
The post, which has been shared more than 2,100 times as of Monday morning, said, “While there were two enforcers and one police officer along the Alexandra park connector, there was not a single enforcer in sight at Robertson Quay, which is like five minutes away.
“And it was observed that staff of these F&B establishments did nothing to stop these people from drinking at their premises nor did they remove the standing tables.”
Singapore is currently in a partial lockdown, or circuit breaker. Among other measures, food and beverage outlets are only allowed to cater to takeaway or delivery orders, with dining-in prohibited.
On Monday, the Ministry of Health (MOH) reported 305 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore, bringing the total count to 28,343.
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