UPDATE: The Manpower Ministry is investigating the matter
SINGAPORE —A food delivery rider in Orchard Road was confronted by a man who claimed he was not a Singaporean or permanent resident, and therefore was not allowed to deliver food.
The video was posted to SG Road Vigilante's Facebook group last Friday (10 March) and has since garnered over 40,000 views.
Rider begged video-taking man to stop
In the 1 minute 42 seconds video, the rider, dressed in a blue top, was seen covering his face and appeared to be crying as another man behind the camera raises his voice.
"You stand your distance," the other man yelled, while the rider responded, "I'm begging you."
Despite this, the man continued to film, moved his phone to reveal the licence plate on the rider's motorised bicycle, and said, "Illegal rider, doing our local delivery job."
"You're not supposed to come to Singapore (to) do this; our jobs are getting (fewer) because of you," the man continued to accuse the rider.
In addition to taking a video of the food, he demanded to see the delivery receipt and showed it to the camera. The man then threatened to call the police if the rider didn't show his profile or name to him on the Foodpanda rider app.
According to the foodpanda website, one must be a Singaporean or permanent resident (PR) to ride with them. This is also a requirement for both GrabFood and Deliveroo food delivery riders.
Netizens condemn humiliation of rider
Netizens have condemned the man for humiliating the rider, and have expressed sympathy towards the rider, whom they claimed was just trying to make a living.
Facebook user, A.j Kasetyo, questioned the video's purpose."There was no need to humiliate him, Everyone is trying to survive in these hard times," he commented.
Another user, Jaemi Jin, asked if anyone knew the rider in the video."If we can help assist or donate to him in any way. After all, he’s just trying to earn a rice bowl," she said.
Some users have also described the actions of the man who filmed the rider as "disgusting."
Rider account suspended
A foodpanda spokesperson told Yahoo News Singapore on Monday (13 March) that the food and grocery service is aware of the incident and has since suspended the rider account involved.
"Only Singaporeans and PR individuals are eligible to be delivery partners of foodpanda, and we do not condone the illegal use of rider accounts in any manner," the spokesperson said.
It added that any accounts against their terms and conditions would be suspended or blacklisted.
"We have put in place measures to prevent such frauds. It is mandatory for delivery partners to complete a selfie verification before the start of every shift to prevent identity fraud and to protect their own accounts. Failure to do so can lead to account suspension and potential blacklist," the spokesperson explained.
The delivery platform urges individuals who suspect any unauthorised use of a rider account to report the matter to foodpanda for investigation.
Manpower Ministry investigating the incident
A spokesperson from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) told Yahoo News Singapore on Thursday (16 March) that it is investigating the matter.
MOM said that foreigners without a valid work pass are not allowed to moonlight or work as riders on food delivery applications such as Deliveroo, foodpanda, and GrabFood.
Furthermore, MOM is investigating whether delivery workers have allowed their accounts with delivery services companies to be used by unauthorised parties.
It would be an abetment offence for those found to have done so.
According to MOM, under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act, any foreigner working without a valid work pass or moonlighting, and others found abetting the offence, may face a fine of up to $20,000 or imprisonment of up to two years, or both.
If found guilty of carrying out illegal work, foreigners may also be prohibited from working in Singapore.
MOM said it has also contacted delivery platforms to inquire about their efforts to prevent unauthorised users from misusing legitimate delivery workers' accounts and ensure the effectiveness of these measures.
Do you have a story tip? Email: email@example.com.