COVID-19: Robertson Quay restaurants ordered to stop selling takeaway alcohol to prevent gatherings

COVID-19: Robertson Quay restaurants ordered to stop selling takeaway alcohol to prevent gatherings

Robertson Quay crowds
People seen gathering outside restaurants along Robertson Quay. (Photo: Facebook/Lectress Pat) 

SINGAPORE: Some restaurants in Roberston Quay have been told to stop selling takeaway alcohol in order to prevent gatherings from taking place in the area, said the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Monday (May 18). 

"During our safe distancing patrols at Robertson Quay, our officers found the majority of operators and individuals to be compliant with safe distancing measures," said URA. 

"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, URA 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," the authority said.

It added that it will not hesitate to take further enforcement action against business operators for other infringements of safe distancing measures. 

Robertson Quay crowds 2
People seen talking around standing tables. (Photo: Facebook/Lectress Pat) 

POLICE INVESTIGATING "A NUMBER OF INDIVIDUALS": MASAGOS

On Monday night, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli said that the Singapore Police Force (SPF) has traced "a number of the individuals" who had gathered in the area. 

"These persons are non-Singaporeans, and are currently under police investigation," he said in the Facebook post. 

He added that URA will continue to monitor the area with the police to ensure compliance of safe distancing measures by both operators and individuals. 

The minister reminded the public that the "circuit breaker" can "only work when everybody plays their part".

"The circuit breaker has been ongoing for almost six weeks. We have about two more weeks to go. We are seeing progress from our collective efforts," he said, adding that the fight against COVID-19 is "far from over" and urging people to stay at home.

On Saturday, Facebook user Lectress Pat posted photos of crowds gathering outside F&B outlets along Robertson Quay. 

"Staff of these F&B establishments did nothing to stop these people from drinking at their premises nor did they remove the standing tables," wrote the user. 

In the photos, people are seen seated on a flight of stairs close to each other, and also standing together around tables. 

As of Monday night, the post had more than 2,000 shares. 

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Source: CNA/ad(mi)

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