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Security Guard Agency and Its Director Fined $13,800 for Breaching Laws on Overtime Work

Petra Security Agency Pte Ltd, a security guard agency, was fined a total of $11,000 on 3 August 07 for 22 charges under the Employment Act. Another 17 charges were taken into consideration during sentencing. The agency director, Mr Saleem s/o Abdul Razak was also convicted on 7 charges and the remaining 32 charges were taken into consideration. He was fined a total of $2,800, or in default, 6 weeks' imprisonment. Petra Security Agency has since ceased operations as a security agency.

2.   In October 2005, a site inspection by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) revealed that Petra Security Agency had violated the Employment Act. Three of the agency's guards who were deployed at a client's site had worked more than 44 hours a week without overtime payment on 33 occasions. The same guards worked more than 72 hours of overtime a month on five occasions between August and September 2005, even though the company did not have MOM's approval to do so. Additionally, one of the guards was not provided with one rest day per week.

3.   Since January 2005, the Security Industry Forum (SIF), a committee led by the Security Industry Regulatory Department of the Singapore Police Force with representatives from the MOM, the Singapore Workforce Development Agency, Union of Security Employees and the industry associations, have been working closely to raise the professionalism of the security industry and improve the employment conditions and career prospects of security personnel. The Ministry of Manpower and the police also conduct regular checks on the agencies to detect violations of the Employment Act and licensing conditions.

4.   General Secretary, Union of Security Employees, Mr Patrick Tay said "Much has been done to upgrade the security industry and professionalise it. We will continue our efforts to achieve the vision of becoming a world-class private security industry so that more Singaporeans will see the security industry as a viable career choice." Mr T Morgan, President, Security Association, Singapore, commented "I am glad that the private security industry is going through changes for better management and provision of security services. It is of utmost importance that security service providers uphold all laws regulating the management of this business." Mr James Aruldoss, President, Association of Certified Security Agencies, agreed that "The collaborative and tireless efforts of the SIF and the regulatory checks in addressing industry concerns have substantially improved the morale and livelihood of officers.  He added that "The industry is heading in the right direction, benefiting both the security officers and companies".

5.   Petra Security Agency is the fifth security agency since 2006 to be charged in court for violating the Employment Act. Employers must comply with the provisions on working hours and other employment conditions stipulated in the Employment Act. Those who are found to have violated the Act may be prosecuted in court and fined up to $1,000 for each offence. For a second or subsequent offence, he can be fined up to $2,000 or imprisoned for a term not exceeding one year or both. Employees or members of the public can provide feedback on non-compliance of the Employment Act to the Ministry (Tel: 6438 5122 or Email:

6.   Some basic information on the Employment Act as well as useful contacts are given in Annex A.