Singapore Petition To Ban Travelers From China Gains Momentum Online
UPDATE (28 Jan, 4.25pm): The Singapore government has banned travellers holding Hubei passports and those that visited the province in the last 14 days, following 2 new confirmed cases.
With the confirmation of the 5th case of the Wuhan virus in Singapore, many are calling for a travel ban on flights entering from China.
In light of travel bans imposed by neighbouring countries, Singaporeans are pressuring the government to introduce stricter travel policies through an online petition.
This is in fear that more carriers might enter the country, catalysing the spread of the Wuhan virus.
Travel ban petition garnered 90,000 signatories
As of Tuesday (28 Jan), the petition on Change.org has already garnered over 90,000 signatures.
The number has tripled from a day before, showing the growing support for this petition.
This means many are in favour of a travel ban that momentarily stops flights from all parts of China.
It is an understandable request, considering the increase in fear surrounding the virus, as more cases of the Wuhan virus are carried in by travellers from China.
Travel ban may not be effective
The petition stems from the belief that Singapore should prioritise the people’s health above all.
However, one commentator suggests that such a move could instead bring about more harm than good.
In his Facebook post dated 27 Jan, ex-NMP Mr Calvin Cheng highlighted a few points from articles that evaluated the effectiveness of a travel ban.
Mr Cheng wrote in his post that while travel bans might seem ideal, it will, at best, aid in slowing down the spread of the virus, and do not reduce the overall number of cases.
On the contrary, it might further restrict those affected from receiving help from the international community.
Despite so, countries like Malaysia and Philippines suspended visas for Chinese travellers from Hubei province, which Wuhan is in.
Singapore already taking action to curb the virus
While the government has not announced plans to implement a travel ban, they are promptly introducing measures to contain the virus.
Beside temperature screenings for entering flights, medical teams are also on duty at our airports to identify those who are feeling unwell.
Hence, we can be reassured that actions are taken to protect Singaporeans from the coronavirus.
Perhaps such an extreme policy is not needed as of now.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Featured image adapted from The Straits Times