SINGAPORE: An auxiliary police officer who became ill after consuming food from Spize died on Wednesday evening (Nov 14).
Mr Fadli Saleh, an employee of ground-handling firm SATS, was among 81 people who fell sick after eating food supplied by the restaurant chain's River Valley outlet.
The food was catered for a Deepavali celebration organised by security company Brink's Singapore.
The 38-year-old was being treated in the intensive care unit of a hospital at the time of his death, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) in response to Channel NewsAsia's queries.
"The cause of death is pending as it has been classified as a coroner’s case," the ministry said.
More cases of people taking ill have since been reported.
As of 5pm on Thursday, a total of 81 people were affected, said MOH, up from the 72 reported on Wednesday night.
Nine people were still in hospital and 37 others have been discharged, MOH said in its update. Those hospitalised are in a "stable condition", it added.
"HE WAS A LOYAL COLLEAGUE"
Brink's Singapore confirmed that a number of its employees had fallen ill after consuming food catered by Spize.
"This is a tragic situation and we offer our heartfelt condolences to his family," the company said of Mr Fadli's death.
"He was a loyal colleague with a strong work ethic and dedication to serving our customers and his colleagues," it added.
In response to queries from Channel NewsAsia, SATS said it was providing support to Mr Fadli's family.
Following the incident, the licence of Spize’s River Valley outlet was suspended indefinitely after health authorities found “several hygiene lapses” at the restaurant.
The lapses include leaving food uncovered in a fridge, not providing soap for hand-washing and keeping knives in a gap between food preparation tables, MOH said in a joint news release with the National Environment Agency (NEA) and Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA).
"The suspension will be in place until NEA is satisfied that the public health risks have been addressed," the release said.
Spize, which has four branches, issued a statement on its River Valley outlet’s Facebook page saying it was saddened by the death.
“We in the Spize family are extremely saddened by the demise of Mohd Fadli. Our heart goes out to his wife and family,” it said.
The restaurant’s management will provide “all help and assistance that is needed” to the family, it said, without elaborating.
“Our sincere prayers are with them and all who are still recovering. We would like to assure everyone that we are taking all measures necessary to cooperate with MOH & AVA in the investigations and help in any way we can.”