Take more proactive approach to curb misuse of addresses

Condominium blocks in Singapore on March 24, 2017.
Condominium blocks in Singapore on March 24, 2017.PHOTO: ST FILE

It is important to take a proactive approach to solving the problem of misuse of addresses by foreign workers instead of just reacting when cases surface (Misuse of condo residents' addresses sparks concern, May 3). What is the root of the problem ?

I checked my address using the Ministry of Manpower's (MOM) Foreign Worker Tenant Enquiry Service last week and found one falsely registered tenant.

So I followed the steps provided and removed the person successfully.

Recently, I checked again and found a new false entry. Based on the newspaper report, many residents appear to be facing this problem.

It is helpful that MOM has provided a guide to remove and block future cases, but why does this happen in the first place?

Why is the system designed in such a way as to allow such misuse, resulting in inconvenience to many home owners?

It is commendable that MOM has rolled out the Foreign Worker Tenant Enquiry Service and conducts regular inspections, taking offenders to task. However, these are but fire-fighting measures.

It would be even better to nip the issue in the bud. Can the system prevent such misuse to begin with? Is it possible to have some form of validation during the submission of an address?

As the public may not fully know the complexity involved, perhaps MOM could share the constraints in implementing changes to the system.

Perhaps we could harness the collective wisdom of the public to resolve this issue in a sustainable way.

David Lee

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 06, 2019, with the headline 'Take more proactive approach to curb misuse of addresses'. Print Edition | Subscribe