Tag Archives: Labour court

Process stage: labour court

In-Principle Approval: uses and abuses 2011 – 2018, introduction

Introduction Accompanying this introduction is a six-part series of articles that spotlights the In-Principle Approval for a Work Permit (“IPA”), a key document in the import of foreign labour into Singapore. Behind the document is a process that, over time, has shown several weaknesses. What began as a document and process with a laudable aim  Continue Reading »

In-Principle Approval: uses and abuses 2011 – 2018, part 4

Part 4: MOM begins at last to respond to changing circumstances In Part 2 of this series, we described how workers with salary claims often pointed to the stated salaries in their In-Princple Approvals for Work permits (“IPA”) [footnote 1] as the basis for their claims. However, the Ministry of Manpower (“MOM”) itself took the  Continue Reading »

In-Principle Approval: uses and abuses 2011 – 2018, part 2

Part 2: Salary terms Very few of the migrant workers from India and Bangladesh working in non-domestic sectors have written employment contracts. Contracts are more common with workers from China, but typically these contracts are signed in their home country between the agent and the worker. TWC2 noticed that Ministry of Manpower (MOM) officers often  Continue Reading »

“Justice for foreign workers benefits Singaporean workers too,” says TWC2 President

In a commentary piece carried on Channel NewsAsia on 21 June 2018, Assistant Secretary-General of the National Trades Union Congress Patrick Tay wrote of the significance of a recent High Court judgement in favour of Bangladeshi worker Hasan Shofiqul — which had been earlier been reported prominently by the Straits Times (header pic). Patrick Tay  Continue Reading »

When court orders are worthless: the Zach Engineering case

Longform by Gautam Joseph with contribution by Choo Wai Hong  Timeline Dec 2014 Two workers at Zach Engineering summarily dismissed after employer has disagreement with Ministry of Manpower (MOM). Mar – Jun 2015 Two workers rehired by Zach Engineering, three other Bangladeshi workers join. Oct 2015 Fifteen workers paid only food allowance. Indian workers fight  Continue Reading »

Basic salary stated in IPA is “prima facie” the applicable basic salary, rules the High Court

In a landmark judgment released 1 November 2017, the High Court has ruled that the basic salary stated in the In-Principle Approval for a Work Permit (IPA) “would constitute prima facie evidence” of the correct basic salary rate, unless the employer can prove otherwise. The bar for proving otherwise was also set very high. This  Continue Reading »

Employer proclaims he lied to ministry, then gets away with paying less in salary

Transient Workers Count Too came across a very interesting statement by Mr Tan Khim Long, director of KBC Engineering Pte Ltd. The company was defending a salary claim by a former employee, a Bangladeshi named Showkat, for short-payment of salary. The case was heard by the Manpower Ministry’s Labour Court in late 2016 and early  Continue Reading »

Worker had to pay $80 to get his own payslips

We shall call the worker Towhid. He was paid less than promised through several months of work. After lodging a complaint at the Ministry of Manpower, his case went before the Labour Court, which strictly speaking is an administrative tribunal within the ministry, not a judicial court. Nonetheless, one would expect the tribunal to have  Continue Reading »

Today Weekend features our Everglory scam story

Our earlier story on the Everglory Construction case (The Everglory scam: productivity incentive shot to pieces) caught the attention of the press. Today Weekend (a newspaper) carried a story titled “Efforts to raise quality of construction workforce hamstrung by dishonest firms” on 8 July 2017, based on our exposé. The newspaper article can be found at this link: http://www.todayonline.com/singapore/efforts-raise-quality-construction-workforce-hamstrung-dishonest-firms  Continue Reading »

Straits Times reports on ‘gaps in Labour Court system’ and the plight of 5 Zach Engineering employees

Following the launch of TWC2’s research report yesterday (see Labour protection for the vulnerable: challenges and recommendations), the Straits Times carried two stories Friday (30 June 2017) almost filling up all of page B4.   The newspaper noted that our research study found “significant obstacles and uneven enforcement” that prevent migrant workers from getting justice,  Continue Reading »