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SINGAPORE: Five of the workers who protested outside a building in Ang Mo Kio this week were owed salaries, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Friday (Oct 21).

These outstanding payments have since been settled in full by the workers’ employer, Zhengda Corporation, MOM said in a Facebook post.

MOM and the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM) had been assisting the 10 migrant workers from Zhengda Corporation who were involved in the incident on Oct 18. Earlier reports stated that there were nine workers involved, however, this number was revised.

“We have found that five of the 10 workers were owed salary payments. We have assisted all five workers with their salary claims, and Zhengda Corporation has since settled the payments in full,” MOM said.

“We have also verified that the other five workers as well as the rest of Zhengda Corporation’s workforce are not owed salary payments and did not report any well-being concerns thus far.”

MOM has also found that Shanghai Chong Kee owes salary payments to their migrant workers, said the ministry, adding that MOM and TADM are currently assisting these workers.

Both Shanghai Chong Kee and Zhengda Corporation are being investigated for possible offences under the Employment Act, it added.

On Tuesday afternoon, the workers blocked the entrance and exit of the building at 5 Ang Mo Kio Street 62, holding up signs with the company name Shanghai Chong Kee in Mandarin and demanding their salaries.

On Wednesday, the company’s safety director said that the protest was over a payment dispute between his company and subcontractor Zhengda Corporation.

He said that six of the men were engaged by Shanghai Chong Kee for renovation work at the Ang Mo Kio site.

According to Zhengda Corporation, Shanghai Chong Kee did not make payment for weeks. The latter had since issued two cheques, Zhengda Corporation’s project director said on Wednesday.

MOM said that the well-being of Singapore’s workforce, including its migrant workers, is always its priority.

“MOM and TADM will continue to help workers who face salary issues and assist them in recovering their salaries,” the ministry said, adding it is also working with the Migrant Workers’ Centre and the Building Construction and Timber Industries Employees’ Union to help with the well-being of workers.

Migrant workers who require assistance with regard to salary issues can contact MOM at 6438 5122 or TADM via its website.