SMRT bus drivers go on strike over pay issue

HRM 27 Nov 2012

More than a hundred bus drivers in Singapore refused to go to work on Monday, and instead gathered at their dormitory in Woodlands.

The drivers, who are Chinese nationals, were unhappy about the recent pay increase that Malaysian drivers received, reported Chinese newspaper Shin Min Daily News.  Malaysian drivers received a $275 increment and a month’s bonus, while Chinese nationals were paid $75 more without any bonus.

The exact number of bus drivers who were on strike is not confirmed. The Straits Times reported that there were about 200 bus drivers assembled, while a spokesman for SMRT said there were only 102.

SMRT HR executive was called in to resolve the issue but the situation did not go anywhere. This led to the calling of police with their riot vans.

An SMRT spokesperson said last night that talks between management and drivers ended at about 6pm, and that the drivers will be returning to work the next day.

According to the workers involved, SMRT said that the issue will be concluded in about one week.




A report from Today said that 60 out of the 102 SMRT drivers failed to show up for work on Tuesday.

According to tweets from Today, police are at the Woodlands dorm for SMRT drivers.

The tweets also quoted an SMRT source which said that no arrests have been made, but those who do not turn up for work on Tuesday will be sacked.

A private ambulance, believed to have been engaged by SMRT, was also on hand to check on drivers who claimed they were sick.

Leave your comment
Start a new discussion

HRM Asia forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

Post a Comment
HRM Asia welcomes your contribution. Your IP address is recorded in the event of a complaint.
Name *
Email *
(required, but will not display)
Comment *
Please enter in the numbers in the box left.
You are about to submit your comment. Is it:
  • Professional
  • In your own name or pseudonym, not impersonating someone else
  • Free from rude language
  • Free from advertising
  • If you prefer not to post but are still keen to get your viewpoint across, you can always e-mail the editor.
  • 23 Apr | Elliott Scott HR Recruitment Pte Ltd | Singapore
    23 Apr | Kelly Services | Singapore
    23 Apr | M1 Limited | Singapore
    MasterCard – International mobility and training for HiPo talent
    Appandairajan Krishnakumar, Senior Business Partner - HR, MasterCard, shares how his organisation effectively selects its high potential talent, sends them off on international assignments and trains them.
    Organisational leadership in the 21st century
    Spearheading corporate democracy @ Facebook
    Tailor-make your talent strategy: Top tips from Carlsberg
    Performance Leadership Pte Ltd |
    Increase productivity and getting funding from Health Promotion Board, through a series of General Health and Mental Wellness programmes.
    Organisational Development Concepts |
    The Service Excellence Competency Frame (SVCF) is a competency-based training and assessment framework that equips service professionals with the rele ...
    Performance Leadership Pte Ltd |
    Lunch, Learn and Bond with your teams, all within 1 hour! Choose from a variety of light-hearted, interesting or thought-provoking topics that appeal ...