MP Louis Chua

Mr Chua Kheng Wee Louis asked the Minister for Home Affairs (a) what measures are being put in place to deter and detect road touts; and (b) whether there have been any convictions for road touting in the last five years and, if so, how many.

The Minister of State for Home Affairs (Assoc Prof Dr Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim) (for the Minister for Home Affairs): Mr Speaker, between 2018 and 2022, the number of road touting Police reports remained low, at two or fewer cases each year. This data was given in the reply to Member Melvin Yong’s question last month.

There was no conviction for road touting in the last five years.

Mr Speaker: Mr Louis Chua.

Mr Chua Kheng Wee Louis (Sengkang): Thank you, Mr Speaker. Just a follow-up supplementary question to the Minister of State. Based on a CNA article which I read from about one to two months ago, one of the interviewees said that this appears to be a very prevalent measure. I am just wondering what measures are put in place to detect road touts and also not just on the touts themselves, but on the workshops that facilitate some of these egregious claims.

Assoc Prof Dr Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim: Sir, I thank the Member for the supplementary question. Our sense is that members of the public, especially the motorists, know how to handle road touts. In essence, while there are Police reports being made, there are those who also seek guidance and help from their insurers as well as legal counsel for civil remedies.

If you look at road touts, we will look at the case where there may be other offences that have been committed. For example, road touting itself is an offence and so, we will look at the Miscellaneous Offences (Public Order and Nuisance) Act. Within it, depending on the facts and the circumstances of the case, they may be involved in some road traffic offences, Protection from Harassment Act offences and so forth. Essentially, we will look at the facts of the case and at the same time, it is clear that touting in any form is an offence. So, people are aware and our sense is that people know how to handle it, remain calm, they disengage.

If at any point in time there are reports and we see this as a serious matter, we will take action where necessary.

Ministry of Home Affairs
23 February 2023

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