Singapore’s Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong had to pause midway through his speech in Parliament on Wednesday (March 25) to wipe away tears as he thanked Singapore’s frontline workers battling the coronavirus outbreak.
“Words are not sufficient to express our appreciation for…” Wong said before choking up and stopping to take a sip from his cup.
He then tried again to deliver his lines, but emotions got the better of him, forcing him to pause once more.
After stepping back to wipe away his tears, the minister, who is also co-chair of the Covid-19 multi-ministry taskforce, asked for a minute to compose himself.
He then continued with a quavering voice: “Words are not sufficient to express our appreciation for so many Singaporeans going all out to fight the virus. And I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who is doing their part.”
In the same parliamentary session, Wong also said that the nation needed to “move faster” in its efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
“We have to move faster – we still hear anecdotes of people going to discos and night clubs, and gathering together in large groups – our big worry is that these can become super-spreader events, spawning new clusters and potential runaway outbreaks,” he was quoted by The Straits Times as saying.
Singapore, which has been lauded by healthcare experts for its swift efforts to contain the outbreak, recorded its first two deaths from the outbreak on Saturday. As of March 24, the Republic has reported a total of 558 infections since the outbreak began, with 326 of these imported.
Watch a video clip of Lawrence Wong’s message posted on The Straits Times’ Facebook page below:
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