Josexfiend is the second weakest link in the COVID-19 taskforce, after Gan Buay Yong.
From Suzhou to MOM, it's hindsight all the way yo!
Sweep ah sweep.........two thumbs up!
When you’re unhappy at work due to boss-related issues, it’s probably unrealistic to expect an apology for less than ideal work conditions.
Unfortunately, something similar is happening to our migrant workers, but with more serious consequences. Living conditions within dormitories across the island have been placed under media scrutiny, due to an outbreak of Covid-19 involving thousands of patients.
And yet, despite being exposed to a deadly disease, it seems none of the workers have asked the authorities in Singapore to apologise to them.
NMP asks Minister if an apology would be issued to migrant workers
This issue was discussed at length in Parliament on Monday (4 May), after Manpower Minister Josephine Teo’s ministerial statement on the Covid-19 situation in Singapore.
Ms Anthea Ong – Nominated Member of Parliament – posed her a challenging question. In essence, she wished to find out if the Government was willing to apologise for “dismal conditions” and the recent Covid-19 outbreak within workers’ dorms.
In her answer, Minister Teo said this,
I have not come across one single migrant worker himself that has demanded an apology.
More at https://mustsharenews.com/josephine-teo-migrant-workers-apology
SINGAPORE — National Development Minister Lawrence Wong conceded that the safeguards against COVID-19 in foreign worker dormitories were “not sufficient”, according to a CNBC report on Wednesday (6 May), in the frankest admission yet by a Singapore leader that the government dropped the ball on the issue.
In an interview with CNBC’s Squawk Box Asia, the co-chair of the multi-ministry taskforce on the coronavirus was asked by anchor Sri Jegarajah why the government had failed to identify these dorms, which house some 400,000 men across Singapore, as a potential area of infection risk.
Wong responded by pointing out that the foreign worker clusters have occurred not just in the dormitories, but also in common work sites and gathering areas.
Jegarajah then pressed Wong, “But do you accept that conditions in those foreign worker dormitories were frankly appalling, frankly unhygienic, and this was an accident waiting to happen from a public health point of view? And if so, are those conditions going to change?”
Wong replied that the living environment in the dorms has been steadily improving over the years, stressing that the real issue was that they were designed for communal living.
Nevertheless, he said, “I think the lesson we've learnt from this experience is that with this pandemic, the unprecedented pandemic, the safeguards were not sufficient, and the design of the dormitories have to change. It cannot be designed in the same manner as it was before."
Wong’s comments came on the same day that the Ministry of Health (MOH) reported a preliminary 788 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore as of Wednesday noon, bringing the total to 20,198. The vast majority of the new cases are foreign workers living in dorms, said the ministry.
The government has come under fire in recent weeks for failing to take stricter measures earlier to curb the spread of the virus in dorms, a number of which had been reported by the media and non-government organisations to be in cramped and unhygienic conditions. A total of 16,998 migrant workers living in dorms have so far tested positive for COVID-19 as of Tuesday.
Speaking in Parliament on Monday, Manpower Minister Josephine Teo was asked if the authorities would apologise for the large number of coronavirus cases in the dorms. Teo responded by saying that migrant workers were more concerned with issues such as their medical care, wages and remittance.
“These are the things that they have asked of us. I have not come across one single migrant worker himself that has demanded an apology,” Teo said.
Oops, looks like Jo Teo just got thrown under the bus. Ah might as well, she's only as competent as my granny's panties.
TCJ kenna whacked by netizens for for saying dorm conditions are not solely responsible for infection clusters!
Singapore—Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin said on Thursday (May 7) that the poor living conditions in foreign workers’ dormitories should not be seen as the sole cause of the outbreak of infection clusters in these living quarters. Instead, the spread should be attributed to the coronavirus’ highly infectious nature, as well as overcrowding in the dorms.
Mr Tan, who served as Singapore’s Minister of Manpower from 2014 to 2015, spoke to the press on the sidelines of an event for foreign workers’ dormitories, he underlined the importance of not conflating the two issues of the coronavirus pandemic and poor living conditions.
The Speaker answered questions about the outbreak of coronavirus cases in foreign workers’ dormitories, where over 85 percent of Singapore’s infections are found. He said that poor living conditions are not the only reason, even if some dorms are “abysmal.”
However, he said that the issue is not about “white-washing” the situation, but avoiding generalising dorm conditions as a whole.
The cramped and sometimes unhygienic conditions in dormitories have become an issue in the national conversation due to the high number of infections in the dormitories. Even the quality of the workers’ meals has been in the news.
The Speaker added, “It doesn’t excuse (bad conditions), it is not acceptable and we need to take stringent action against those who violate the law – but it doesn’t represent the whole space and that’s the context that is important.
It is important to speak to the migrant workers as a whole for their lived experience to have a sense of the conditions. And given the scale and nature of this outbreak, we should not conflate the causes with these less-than-accurate generalisations.”
While he acknowledged that many aspects of dormitory living can and will be improved upon by the Government, he urged that issues at hand be dealt with first. “Let’s grapple with the (present) issues, look after our people and look after all the people who are here in Singapore who are affected in different ways,” Mr Tan said.
Many netizens took issue with Mr Tan’s points, disagreeing with what he said about the living conditions in foreign workers’ dormitories. Some netizens even recalled that Mr Tan had once said seniors collected cardboard for exercise.
More at http://theindependent.sg/netizens-push-back-at-tan-chuan-jin-for-saying-dorm-conditions-not-solely-responsible-for-infection-clusters/
Tan Chuan Jin is a fucking hack whose demotion to speaker of parliament was truly well-deserved.
Tan Chuan Jin (TCJ) needs to be publicly screamed at, shamed and even slapped for his idiotic utterances about what was published on page A4 of today’s Straits Times.
The same Tan Chuan Jin who once remarked that our elderly citizens scavenging for hours each day at public dustbins for empty drink cans to sell for a pittance were merely exercising has recently surmised that the massive outbreak of C19 cannot be attributed to bad living conditions alone.
My first reaction after reading what he has said was how could such an idiot rise to become an army general in our SAF? Something is obviously and seriously wrong with our overly worshipped book-smart system in Singapore.
Next, my instincts alerted me that he was once a Manpower Minister himself and could he be trying to pre-empt and deflect some blame and responsibility away from himself?
By now, the very sorry state of a large number of our worker dormitories have been laid bare for all to see. Dirty, unhygienic, overcrowding and cramped living environments are super conducive for diseases and viruses to breed, spread and multiply. TCJ’s idiotic utterances must never be left unchallenged by any citizen with some semblance of common sense.
They must be called out loudly and their outright stupidity exposed, no less. Think.
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Weeks after two of his roommates were diagnosed with COVID-19, Mohamad Arif Hassan says he’s still waiting to be tested for the coronavirus. Quarantined in his room in a sprawling foreign workers’ dormitory that has emerged as Singapore’s biggest viral cluster, Arif says he isn’t too worried because neither he nor his eight other roommates have any symptoms.
Still, the 28-year-old Bangladeshi construction worker couldn’t be blamed if he were more than just a bit concerned.
Infections in Singapore, an affluent Southeast Asian city-state of fewer than 6 million people, have jumped more than a hundredfold in two months — from 226 in mid-March to more than 23,000, the most in Asia after China, India and Pakistan. Only 20 of the infections have resulted in deaths.
About 90% of Singapore’s cases are linked to crowded foreign workers’ dormitories that were a blind spot in the government’s crisis management. Arif’s dorm complex, which has 14,000 beds, accounts for 11% of total infections, with over 2,500 cases.
This massive second wave of infections caught Singapore off guard and exposed the danger of overlooking marginalized groups during a health crisis. Despite warnings from human rights activists as early as February about the dorms’ crowded and often unsanitary living conditions, no action was taken until cases spread rampantly last month.
Singapore’s costly oversight was also an important lesson to other countries in the region with large migrant populations. Neighboring Malaysia recently announced mandatory coronavirus testing for its more than 2 million foreign workers after dozens were diagnosed with COVID—19.
The slip-up highlighted Singapore’s treatment of its large population of low-wage foreign workers, who play an integral part in the economy but live on the fringes in conditions where social distancing is impossible. The misjudgment was also an embarrassment for Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s government ahead of a general election anticipated in the next few months that is expected to be the last for Lee, who has led Singapore since 2004 and is planning to retire soon.
Singapore’s nanny state government, which won global praise for its meticulous contact tracing and testing in the early stages of the crisis, quickly moved to contain the problem by treating the flare-up in the dorms as a separate outbreak from that in the local community, a policy that some say is discriminatory.
The government shut schools and nonessential businesses island-wide on April 7. So-called “safe distancing ambassadors” were recruited to remind people to wear masks and stay at least a meter apart from each other in public places, or face heavy penalties.
Meanwhile, all construction sites and dorms were locked down and foreign workers largely confined in their rooms. More than 10,000 foreign workers in essential services were moved to safer sites to reduce crowding, and testing was ramped up to include people with no symptoms.
In Arif’s S11 Punggol dorm — advertised as the cheapest in Singapore — police have mounted a 24-hour patrol of the 13 multicolored housing blocks located in the island’s northeast.
Arif, who was sharing a room with 11 other workers, said one of them was moved to an army camp in early April to help ease overcrowding. Shortly afterward, another roommate was hospitalized with a fever, and on April 17 another was isolated with light symptoms, with both testing positive for the coronavirus.
Arif said he hasn’t been tested yet because thousands of residents of his dorm will probably have to be tested. But he said he was comforted by Singapore’s top-notch medical facilities and its relatively low number of deaths from the virus.
He gets food delivered to his room, free Wi-Fi on his cellphone and, most importantly, he said the government has pledged that the workers’ salaries will be paid.
“I am not worried because the government is taking good care of us like Singaporeans,” said Arif, who has lived in Singapore for seven years. “Right now, we take our temperature twice a day, try to stay a meter apart from each other and constantly use hand sanitizer.”
Once belittled as a tiny red dot on the global map, Singapore has relied on overseas workers to build infrastructure and help power its growth into one of the world’s wealthiest nations.
Some 1.4 million foreign workers live in the city-state, accounting for 38% of its workforce. At least two thirds are low-wage, transient migrants from across Asia performing blue-collar jobs that locals shun, such as construction, shipping and maintenance, as well as working as maids.
Roughly 250,000 of the migrants live in 43 privately run dormitories mostly tucked away in the outskirts far from Singapore’s stunning skyscrapers and luxury malls. Workers sleep in bunk beds in rooms usually packed with 12 people, sometimes up to 20, with a required minimum living space of 4.5 square meters (48 square feet) per person.
Another 120,000 migrant labourers live in factory-converted hostels or temporary facilities at work sites, where conditions are sometimes even more dismal.
Most of Singapore’s migrants earn between 500 and 1,000 Singapore dollars ($354-$708) a month.
Since last month, the government’s infection data has separated foreign workers’ cases from those among the general population. Although cases continue to rise among foreign workers, infections have decreased in the local community. The government plans to gradually reopen the economy on Tuesday before island-wide restrictions end June 1, eager to show that it has remedied the situation and that measures have worked.
“The larger narrative that cannot be missed is the tale of two outbreaks in Singapore,” said Eugene Tan, law professor at Singapore Management University. “The outbreak that Singaporeans should pay attention to is the local community. The other outbreak of foreign workers is getting its due attention from the government, but it should not be one that Singaporeans should be unduly concerned about.”
Nonsense! PAP is the best!
I wonder just how many more cans of worms remain unopened?
I have always been befuddled by the clown prince's decision to even induct her into the People's Adultery Party legislature back in 2006.
This feels so wrong in more ways than one........