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COVID-19: Mustafa Centre reopens supermarket after month-long closure

The rest of the mall will remain closed for now, said Mustafa's managing director.

COVID-19: Mustafa Centre reopens supermarket after month-long closure

Shoppers at Mustafa Centre will have to furnish either their passport or NRIC again before they exit the shopping centre. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo)

SINGAPORE: Megamall Mustafa Centre, which was a COVID-19 cluster, reopened its supermarket on Wednesday (May 6), more than a month after it was closed.

All other sections of the mall, which sells a range of products from clothes, to shoes and electronics, will remain shut as part of measures taken during the "circuit breaker" period. 

READ: 49 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; Mustafa Centre among 3 new clusters identified  

Mustafa's managing director Mustaq Ahmad told CNA that the supermarket, which is about 55,000 sq ft in size, reopened at about noon on Wednesday. This was after the management received approval from the authorities to reopen the supermarket portion of the mall following checks, he said.

“We have put in the necessary measures to make sure that Mustafa is safe, including limiting the number of people inside. We have a system that monitors the numbers,” he added.Shoppers at Mustafa Centre have to furnish either their passport or NRIC before they are allowed to enter the shopping centre. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo)

READ: Singapore to start gradual easing of circuit breaker measures as COVID-19 community cases decline

A maximum of 325 people will be allowed in the supermarket at any one time, Mr Mustaq said. The management has also put in place other safe-distancing measures, such as tape on the ground to space customers apart at cashiers.  

Like at other supermarkets around the country, customers will also need to have their identity cards scanned and their temperature checked, he said. There is currently also only one entrance and two exits in use, compared to six entrances and exits previously.

About 100 employees will be working at the supermarket in shifts, Mr Mustaq added.

Besides getting their NRICs scanned, shoppers entering Mustafa Centre can also check-in on their mobile phones by scanning this QR code. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo)

When CNA visited Mustafa Centre at about 3pm on Wednesday, staff members told us only the supermarket and a section selling chocolates were open. 

In a joint response to CNA's queries, Enterprise Singapore (ESG) and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) said on Thursday that they have worked with Mustafa's operator to put in place safe distancing and other precautionary measures prior to the supermarket's reopening. 

"Our safe distancing ambassadors will continue to follow up with the operator to ensure the above measures are adhered to," they said.

On Apr 2, the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced that Mustafa Centre was a COVID-19 cluster, with 11 cases linked to it at the time.

Mustafa Centre partially reopened its doors to shoppers on May 06, 2020. Shoppers can only make purchases at level 2, where the supermarket is located. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo)

A total of 124 COVID-19 cases have been linked to the mall as of May 3.

The mall announced that it would close for at least two weeks in early April, while it got professionally disinfected. The management was also advised by MOH to keep the mall closed for two incubation periods, or 28 days, Mr Mustaq said.

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Source: CNA/ja(rw)


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