Singapore – Snaking queues were spotted at Lucky Plaza and Peninsula Plaza on Sunday (Apr 25) amid strict implementation of safe distancing measures.
Members of the public stood shoulder to shoulder, waiting in line to enter both malls, which are popular venues for migrant workers in Singapore, reported The Straits Times.
At one point, police officers arrived at Peninsula Plaza and turned away a large group of visitors. Security guards also cordoned off the entrances and advised people to come back an hour later due to congestion in the building.
“It’s usually crowded every weekend, but I want to buy my traditional food, so I have no choice. I would like to come every weekend, but I’ve since cut down because I’m a little worried about the crowds,” said a 37-year-old domestic worker to ST.
Meanwhile, safe distancing ambassadors kept a close eye on the crowds at Lucky Plaza. They could be heard shouting “one line, one metre” repeatedly and calling out those who crossed the one-metre safe distancing mark.
A similar sight was spotted on Apr 11, the day after authorities lifted weekend entry restrictions at both malls.
Photos of massive crowds at Lucky Plaza and Peninsula Plaza were widely shared on social media.
It was reported that armed police officers were deployed to patrol the area.
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and Enterprise Singapore (ESG) strongly advised visitors to refrain from going to both malls during peak hours.
The agencies added that restrictions might be reimposed if crowd control continued to be a problem.
Before entry restrictions were lifted, people were allowed to enter the malls on odd or even dates based on the last digit of their identification numbers.
However, some shopkeepers have voiced concerns that the latest safety measures were driving away customers.
“I would prefer the previous system of restricting entry with identification numbers because the crowds were easier to manage. Now they may close off the mall whenever the crowds get too big, and people may not want to wait for the mall to reopen,” said a manager of a souvenir shop in Lucky Plaza to ST./TISG
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