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Fewer layoffs, unemployment situation improves in Q2: Manpower Ministry

People crossing a street in Singapore’s central business district. (File photo: Ngau Kai Yan)  SINGAPORE: Fewer workers were laid off and the unemployment situation for Singaporeans and residents showed signs of improvement in the second quarter, according to preliminary estimates released by the Manpower Ministry (MOM) on Friday (Jul 28). A total of 3,500 workers were retrenched in the April to June period, down from 4,000 in the previous quarter and 4,800 in the same period a year ago. The decrease was broad-based across industries, the ministry said. The unemploymentRead More


Zika cluster reported at Serangoon North Avenue 1

A female Aedes aegypti mosquito acquires a blood meal on the arm of a researcher at the Biomedical Sciences Institute in the Sao Paulo’s University, in Sao Paulo, Brazil on Jan. 18, 2016. (Photo: AP/Andre Penner)  SINGAPORE: Three cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection have been confirmed at Serangoon North Avenue 1, the National Environment Agency (NEA) said on Wednesday (Jul 26). All three cases are residents in the area, it added. NEA said it was notified of the cluster on Wednesday and has started vector control operations and outreachRead More


13 injured in Mount Alvernia shuttle bus accident on Braddell Road

The aftermath of a bus accident along Braddell Road on Wednesday (Jul 26). (Photo: Natasha Razak) SINGAPORE: Thirteen people were injured in an accident along Braddell Road on Wednesday (Jul 26) afternoon, said the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF). Authorities were alerted to the incident, which involved a minibus, at about 12pm and sent two fire engines, four ambulances and two support vehicles to the scene. Channel NewsAsia understands that the bus, which was operating a regular shuttle service provided by Mount Alvernia Hospital, crashed into a bus stop. iLTARead More


Hundreds of Singapore and Malaysia investors duped of millions by property company

According to an ABC report, Macro Realty Developments Pte Ltd is controlled by Australian Veronica Macpherson (picture) and received over A$110 million (S$119 million), mostly from Singaporean and Malaysian investors ETALING JAYA – Singaporean police are investigating a property company believed to be involved in a ponzi scheme that conned hundreds of Malaysians investors out of millions. According to an ABC report, the company is controlled by Australian Veronica Macpherson and received over A$110 million (S$119 million), mostly from Singaporean and Malaysian investors. Although based in Singapore, Macro Realty Developments Pte LtdRead More


7 in 10 Singaporean seniors visited by Pioneer Generation Ambassadors

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong with PG Ambassadors at the appreciation luncheon. (Photo: Junn Loh) SINGAPORE: As of June this year, 7 in 10 Singaporean seniors above 65-years-old have been visited by Pioneer Generation (PG) Ambassadors in their homes, the Pioneer Generation Office (PGO) said on Sunday (Jul 23). The PGO said about 90,000 additional seniors were included in its latest outreach programme, following the expansion of the initiative to all Singaporeans aged 65 and above in July last year. Of this pool, 41,000 of them have been successfully engaged. AtRead More


Buying your way to a degree: Singapore-based ghostwriting services target students online

Singapore-based ghostwriting services are available a dime a dozen on Carousell. (Photo: Howard Law) Some cite years of experience helping students, while others say they are students from elite schools looking to earn some extra cash before they go to university. Here’s what goes into the online market of ghostwritten essays SINGAPORE: It’s an open secret on many campuses here. With assignment deadlines looming, students have the option of burning the midnight oil, or turning to an alternative: Online services offering to complete essay assignments for a fee. Such servicesRead More


Saudi diplomat who molested hotel intern loses appeal

The High Court dismissed as “completely unmeritorious” an appeal by a Saudi Arabian diplomat against his conviction and sentence for molesting a hotel intern while he was here on holiday with his wife and three children last year. Judge of Appeal Steven Chong said the sentence of 26 months and a week’s jail and four strokes of the cane handed down to Bander Yahya A. Alzahrani, 39, was “actually lenient”, especially given the “dishonest” manner in which he ran his defence. Alzahrani, who was stationed in China, had checked intoRead More


FUNNY SINGLISH EXPRESSIONS FOR VISITORS TO SINGAPORE

As soon as I moved to Singapore I started using the word “lah” at the end of every sentence. What does it mean? Not sure. It is a word designed to place emphasis but you can do away without and the sentence will mean mostly the same. Singaporean use lah at end of everything. They also use leh and lor to mean similar emphasis with a positive, negative and double negative focus. If you want to amuse yourself a bit more with the variations on the same you may checkRead More


Man jailed for smuggling chewing tobacco, first conviction under amended law

SINGAPORE: A 32-year-old Singaporean man was sentenced to four weeks’ jail on Thursday (Jul 20) for smuggling into Singapore chewing tobacco products with a street value of about S$9,200. Kavinthiran is the first person to be convicted under changes to the Tobacco (Control of Advertisements and Sale) Act, which banned the import, distribution and sale of emerging tobacco products. The ban took effect on Aug 1 last year. According to the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) in a news release, Kavinthiran had driven a rented car from Johor Bahru to Woodlands CheckpointRead More


Property-bound Singapore capital now prefers home turf

Only 34 outbound investment deals were done in H1 2017, against 144 in 2016. Primary-market property sales are up at home, as are en bloc sales   THE capital flight to greener pastures abroad from Singapore has slowed to a trickle, amid a turnaround in the property market at home. Data compiled by Real Capital Analytics and Knight Frank Research shows that the number of outbound investment deals dwindled to 34 in the first half of 2017. The figure was 144 for last year, and 503 in 2015. The transactionRead More


Construction supervisor gets 11 years’ jail, 9 strokes for rape


A woman who had never left China was looking forward to her very first overseas holiday – to be with her husband who was working here. But nine days into her stay, the 44-year-old was raped by a co-tenant, a Bangladeshi construction supervisor. Yesterday, Hossain Anowar, 32, was sentenced to 11 years’ jail and nine strokes of the cane for raping her on Feb 29 last year. He initially denied it, claiming he had paid for sex. But on the second day of trial, he pleaded guilty after she was cross-examined.Read More


Suspect in Woodlands pellet-shooting incident arrested

SINGAPORE: A 49-year-old man suspected of firing pellets at cars at Woodlands has been arrested, police confirmed on Wednesday (Jul 19). In a media release, police said they were alerted to two cars that were damaged at a service road along Woodlands Avenue 6 on Jul 1. The damage on the cars was believed to be caused by the impact of projectiles that were fired at them. The cars were part of a wedding party and used to ferry the bride, according to local news reports. The cars had damageRead More


Sex change prompts Singapore to annul marriage

KUALA LUMPUR — Singapore has annulled the marriage of a transgender woman and her partner, in a case that has sparked accusations of discrimination against the LGBT community. The unidentified couple were married as man and woman in October 2015 before the husband had a sex change surgery to become a female, according to local daily the Straits Times. But their marriage was voided by officials in February after the couple, who were applying for a government-subsidised flat available for married couples, informed authorities of the sex change, the reportRead More


Taxi fares in Singapore are 20th cheapest in the world: Index

SINGAPORE: Taxi fares in Singapore are the 20th cheapest in the world, according to an index compiled by online used car dealer Carspring, which is based in the United Kingdom. The 2017 Taxi Price Index surveyed 80 of the “most visited cities” around the world including New York, London, Hong Kong and Bangkok. In deciding its ranking, Carspring said it considered the cost of hailing a taxi, the cost per kilometre, the cost of waiting time, and the typical fare from the airport to the city centre. Each category wasRead More


Tengah Air Base to be expanded; more than 80,000 graves exhumed, 4 farms to be acquired

SINGAPORE – About 80,000 graves and six farms occupying more than 106 hectares of land – about a quarter the size of Clementi town – will make way for the expansion of a military airbase in the north-western part of Singapore. The expansion of the 78-year-old Tengah Air Base is to accommodate the relocation of Paya Lebar Air Base (PLAB), which will be completed from 2030 onwards. Part of PLAB will also move to Changi Air Base. In 2013, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said in Parliament that the expansionRead More


Singapore offers SAF assistance to counter terrorism in Philippines

SINGAPORE: Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen has offered the Singapore Armed Forces’ (SAF) assistance to counter the threat of terrorism in Philippines together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) said on Wednesday (Jul 19). In a media release, MINDEF said the SAF’s assistance will include a Republic of Singapore Air Force C-130 transport aircraft, use of the SAF’s urban training villages for AFP troops, and a detachment of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to enhance the AFP’s intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, MINDEF said. TheRead More


Drug mule who transited in Singapore with 43 pellets of Ice gets 25 years’ jail and caning

Adri Anton Kalangie was sentenced to 25 years’ jail and 15 strokes of the cane after he pleaded guilty to importing not less than 249.99g of methamphetamine on Monday, July 17 2017 SINGAPORE – A 42-year-old Indonesian drug mule who swallowed 29 pellets of methamphetamine, inserted 10 pellets into his rectum and hid four pellets in his shorts and shoe, took a flight from China to Singapore, intending to transit to Indonesia on the same day. But at Changi Airport, Adri Anton Kalangie missed his connecting Singapore Airlines flight andRead More


11 injured in chemical leak incident at Kallang, SCDF at the scene

SINGAPORE – A chemical leak at a building in Kallang injured 11 people and prompted the Singapore Civil Defence Force to dispatch its Hazardous Materials (HazMat) officers to the scene, where the leak was contained within a sealed production room. The incident occurred at a wafer production firm, RF360 Singapore, at 166 Kallang Way. SCDF first said in a Facebook post at 2.11pm that it was alerted to the incident and deployed its resources there. It said in an update at 3.47pm that it was alerted to the incident around 1.40pm and dispatched two fireRead More


ROM voids marriage between same-sex couple

They married as man and woman but one later underwent sex change; family lawyers question registry’s move Kok Xing Hui They wedded as man and wife in October 2015. In June last year, the man went for a sex change and updated the identity card to say “female”. For eight months, they were a married same-sex couple here – until the marriage was voided in February. It was one of three voided by the Registry of Marriages (ROM) to date, in a little-known proceeding that has caught family lawyers byRead More


65-year-old man gives out $5,000 worth of durians to customers – on his birthday

Durian seller Mr Yap Kean Seng turned 65 years old on Tuesday (July 11) and to celebrate the special occasion, held a giveaway for his loyal customers. The annual event typically sees eager fans queuing up for free, high-quality durians from Mr Yap, who is affectionally known as Durian Seng. Besides it being an opportunity to show appreciation for his longtime customers, this is also Mr Yap’s way of giving back to society and something he has consistently done for more than 30 years. This year’s “durian party” began at 7.30pmRead More