11 EP, S-Pass holders in ICT sector submitted fake qualifications in 2018-2020

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FILE PHOTO: Yahoo News Singapore
FILE PHOTO: Yahoo News Singapore

SINGAPORE — A total of 11 employment pass and S-Pass holders working in the infocomm technology (ICT) industry were found to have submitted false qualifications to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) from 2018 to 2020, Manpower Minister Tan See Leng said on Monday (2 August).

Their work passes were revoked and they were permanently barred from working in Singapore, said Tan, who was speaking in Parliament.

Replying to a parliamentary question by Ang Mo Kio Member of Parliament (MP) Gan Thiam Poh on such fake qualifications, Tan said employers must ensure the authenticity and the quality of their candidates’ qualifications when submitting work pass applications.

MOM also conducts additional checks by screening the qualifications submitted through its database of institutions, which is reviewed regularly through scanning and research.

“For applications containing qualifications from institutions that are not in our database, we require employers to submit verification proof from third-party screening organisations to ensure that the qualifications submitted are accredited and we will reject applications containing fake or unaccredited qualifications,” Tan said.

“MOM takes a firm stance against foreigners who submit false qualifications to fraudulently obtain work passes.”

Apart from revocation of work passes and debarment from employment in Singapore, MOM may also prosecute offenders for false declaration under the employment of Foreign Manpower Act, which carries a fine of up to $20,000, or up to two years’ jail, or both, Tan added.

In response to a question by Aljunied MP Leon Perera on the verification process of university qualifications in terms of risk level, Tan said MOM conducts independent checks from time to time with the relevant universities.

“Based on our predictive analytics, when we find that there is reason for us to have a very high index of suspicion, we then activate this other route where we actually call them for independent checks,” he added.

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