SINGAPORE – The five bus drivers who filed a lawsuit against their employer SBS Transit over a wage dispute can consider seeking help from the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM).

A Ministry of Manpower (MOM) spokesman made the suggestion in a statement on Wednesday (Sept 25), adding that the ministry is looking into the case.

He said that one of the bus captains had visited TADM earlier to lodge his complaint, but no formal claim was filed during the visit.

“As he was a union member from a unionised company, he was assisted by the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) and the National Transport Workers’ Union,” the spokesman added.

“As the bus captains have since withdrawn from union membership, they can now consider lodging their claims with TADM for mediation.”

The drivers are claiming that SBS Transit had paid them below the MOM’s regulated rate for overtime work, and that their working-hour records do not match the monthly pay slips they were given.

Lawyer M. Ravi of Carson Law Chambers served the transport operator the writs of summons on Monday.

Court documents stated that one of the drivers, Mr Chua Qwong Meng, was expected to work seven days in a row without a rest day and had clocked more than 44 hours in a week.

But he claimed he was not paid the regulated overtime pay rate as stated in his employment contract and filed a report with TADM and NTUC.

Mr Chua also attended meetings with the NTWU and representatives from SBS Transit and its parent group ComfortDelGro in July and last month, but received “no conclusive answers”, according to his statement of claim.

The five bus drivers have since resigned from the NTWU as they felt that they had not been properly represented. They are still driving for SBS Transit.