In a Facebook post on Thursday (Feb 6), Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan had urged Singaporeans to remember that, despite the challenge that the coronavirus (2019-nCoV) posed to the country, there were other matters that had to be given attention. “There is more to life than nCoV,” he said in his post. Although he attempted to shift the public’s attention to the progress achieved in the transport sector, those online found his statement to be insensitive.
Among the accomplishments was the official order of additional trains for the Jurong Region Line, which is set to be operational by 2026. Mr Khaw also reported that the Mean Kilometres Between Failure for all MRT lines had already passed the one million kilometre mark, signifying rail reliability. He also noted that, according to the 2019 Public Transport Customer Satisfaction Survey, there had been “continued improvement in commuters’ perception of our bus and train services”. As the aviation sector had been severely impacted by the coronavirus (2019-nCoV) given the drastic drop in flights to and from Singapore, Mr Khaw paid a visit to retailers in Changi Airport and assured them that a package to help them manage during this time of reduced traffic was already in the works.
However, despite the good news from the Transport Minister, some people online found his statement to be inconsiderate. A few said that it was easy for people who have as big a salary as Mr Khaw to say “there is more to life than nCov”. Given that Singapore was now one of the countries outside China with many confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV, netizens were disappointed that he had made such a comment. /TISG
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