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Dormitory operator and its director prosecuted under the Foreign Employee Dormitories Act

  1. On 4 July 2019, dormitory operator Labourtel Management Corporation Pte Ltd (Labourtel), one of the companies within the MES group, and its Director, 42-year-old Singaporean Parvis Ahamed s/o Mohamed Ghouse (Parvis), became the first company and individual to be prosecuted under the Foreign Employee Dormitories Act 2015 (FEDA)1
  2. Labourtel and Parvis face 10 and six charges respectively for failing to comply with the licensing conditions, committed between November 2017 and January 2019 (see Annex for breakdown of charges).
  3. If convicted, the offender can be fined up to $50,000, or imprisoned for up to 12 months, or both, for each contravention of the licensing condition. 

    Dormitories in unsatisfactory living conditions
  4. During an inspection at four purpose built dormitories (PBDs) managed by Labourtel, namely Jurong Penjuru Dormitory 1 and 2, Blue Stars Dormitory and The Leo, the Ministry of Manpower had found several breaches of the FEDA. 
  5. Investigations revealed that the PBDs were poorly maintained. For example, there were missing or damaged light fixtures, faulty shower taps and corroded railings and staircases. The living conditions in the PBDs were also filthy and unacceptable, such as cockroaches found in the rooms.
  6. The cases against Labourtel and Parvis have been adjourned to 1 August 2019 for a Further Mention. 

FOOTNOTE

  1. FEDA regulates how large dormitories with 1,000 beds or more should be managed. Such dormitories are required to obtain a licence under FEDA to operate. Since 2015, the law requires all large dormitories to apply for a licence to operate. Under FEDA, dormitory operators are subject to a set of licensing conditions which aim to address added complexities associated with the management of large dormitories due to the high concentration of foreign workers in the dormitories. Licensed dormitories will need to meet security and public health requirements, as well as provide and maintain social, recreational and commercial amenities for its residents.