A Chinese migrant worker, who passed away on Sunday (31 May) from complications that arose after he was infected with COVID-19, was his family’s sole income provider. The 51-year-old had been working in Singapore for nearly two decades, since 2001.
The migrant worker, whom the authorities refer to as Case 17329, was Singapore’s 24th COVID-19 fatality. The late worker was diagnosed with lymphoma complicated by multi-organ failure at the end of April and was warded at the National University Hospital’s (NUH) intensive care unit. He was confirmed to have COVID-19 infection on 1 May.
The Ministry of Health reported on Monday (1 June) that the worker passed on after his condition deteriorated.
It has now come to light that the late migrant worker was the sole breadwinner for his family, which consists of his parents, wife and son. The Ministry of Manpower added that the worker, who had been working in Singapore since 2001, was a foreman under his current employer for almost a year.
The National Trades Union Congress’ (NTUC) Migrant Workers’ Centre (MWC) is working with the late worker’s employer to assess the family’s situation and find out if they need any help. MWC chairman Yeo Guat Kwang said, “If need be, MWC and the employer are prepared to provide the necessary financial support and assistance to them during this trying period.”
Revealing that the worker’s ashes will be sent back to his family in China, Mr Yeo added on Tuesday (2 June): “We are saddened by the passing of the Chinese national migrant worker and the MWC has been in contact with the family members and Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Singapore on this case.
“We were informed by the embassy that they had communicated with the deceased’s family members on the process of repatriating the deceased’s ashes, and the employer will be arranging for the cremated ashes to be sent back to his family.”
Manpower Minister Josephine Teo also said that the Chinese Embassy in Singapore was kept in the loop on the late worker’s condition from the start. She wrote on Facebook that her ministry is “in close contact with the Migrant Workers’ Centre on financial aid to his next of kin for their immediate needs” and that the worker’s employer will be assisting the family on the funeral arrangements.
Ms Teo added: “It is heart-breaking to think of his family’s grief at such a time. My thoughts and prayers are with them.”
Acknowledging that it is natural for migrant workers to be concerned given the passing of the Chinese worker, the ruling party politician assured: “Singapore Ministry of Manpower will continue to reach out to these migrant workers as we have done so in the past weeks, to offer any assistance and assurance that they would need.”
CONDOLENCES TO THE FAMILY OF THE MIGRANT WORKER WHO SUCCUMBED TO COVID-19I have been closely monitoring the conditions…
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