SINGAPORE: This year's National Day Parade will continue as planned for now, but the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) is reviewing the scale of the event and other measures, co-chair of the COVID-19 multi-ministry task force Lawrence Wong said on Tuesday (Jul 20).
“National Day is an important national event, especially that it is not just any other occasion. So as of now, we do intend to continue with a National Day Parade," said Mr Wong at a press conference.
"But MINDEF is reviewing the conduct of the parade, the scale of the parade and all the necessary safe management measures to ensure that any rehearsal or events leading up to the parade itself can be done safety."
The Defence Ministry will provide updates later, he added.
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Mr Wong, who is also Finance Minister, was responding to a question on how National Day activities will be affected given the increase in COVID-19 infections and tighter restrictions.
The task force announced on Tuesday that Singapore will return to Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) from Jul 22 until Aug 18. During this period, dining-in will be suspended and group sizes for social gatherings will go back down to two people.
At the current rate of transmission, it is likely that infection cases will “rise sharply”, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) in a media release.
“Unvaccinated individuals are at higher risk of being infected, and higher risk of being seriously ill if infected," it added.
"Hence, in the meantime, we must act decisively to contain the current outbreak and minimise the risk of our hospital capacity being overwhelmed, while we race ahead to vaccinate those who have not completed or started their vaccination."